NRL

New NRL LogoBoasting the best attendance figures for a domestic competition of either Rugby code, the National Rugby League or NRL competition, based in Australiasia, is the premier rugby league competition in the world.

The NRL competition features 15 Australian teams and one New Zealand-based side. The NRL season runs across 26 rounds, starting in march and culminating in October with the NRL Grand Final.

FULL 2017 NRL FIXTURES AND DRAW

The NRL year also runs in tandem with a representative season, which includes an ANZAC Test Match, a City-Country fixture, and most prominently, the three-game State Of Origin series.

The weekend of the ANZAC Test Match, City-Country and other international fixtures currently means a week off for the 16 club teams.

The Origin series is played on Wednesday nights throughout the middle of the season, normally with a three week break in each game. During the 2017 season they will be played between Round 12 and 19.

The first season of the NRL was held in 1998, but the league can date its origins back to the New South Wales Rugby League (NSWRL) which began in 1908.

Two clubs remain from the foundation of the NSWRL, the Sydney Roosters and the South Sydney Rabbitohs, though the modern club Wests Tigers is a merger of two foundation clubs, the Balmain Tigers and the Western Suburbs Magpies.

The league expanded over time and in 1982 added its first two clubs from outside the suburbs of Sydney, Canberra and Illawarra. 1988 saw another regional side, the Newcastle Knights, join the league, as well as the first two Queensland clubs, the Brisbane Broncos and Gold Coast-Tweed Giants.

In the 1990s the emergence of a truly national league caught the attention of international media organisation News Corporation, who formed their own ‘Super League’, admitting some of the existing clubs and poaching prominent players.

In 1997 the one and only season of the Super League ran opposite to the ARL with a total of 22 teams running across the two competitions, most of them struggling to turn a profit.

Eventually a compromise was brokered that allowed a single league to be run and this was the birth of the NRL. It ran with 20 teams in 1998 but this was reduced by merger and removal to 14 by 2000. This was later bolstered to 16 by the return of South Sydney in 2002 and the creation of the Gold Coast Titans in 2007.

The league’s popularity has rapidly grown since and its Grand Final and State of Origin representative games are now among the biggest events on Australia’s sporting calendar.

The league’s premiership trophy is known as the Provan-Summons trophym named after Norm Provan and Arthur Summons. The Brisbane Broncos are the most successful team in the modern NRL, with three premiership wins to date (1998, 2000 and 2006).

The Clive Churchill Medal is awarded each year to the player judged the best on ground in the NRL Grand Final, while the Dally M Medal is awarded each year to the player of the year.

The current premiers of the NRL are the Cronulla Sharks, who won the 2016 grand final to break their 49-year drought annd win the first premiership in the club’s history, defeating the Melbourne Storm in an action packed decider by just two points.

Paul Gallen was captain of the Sharks during their premiership run, while the Clive Churchill medal went to Luke Lewis of the Sharks.

The Queensland Maroons representative side are the current State of Origin Champions after a 2-1 win in the 2016 State of Origin series where they had the series wrapped up in straight sets before losing the dead rubber.

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NRL Articles

Wests Tigers forward Kyle Lovett charged with drug possession

Wests Tigers forward Kyle Lovett charged with drug possession

by , 21 Jan 2017

Wests Tigers second-rower Kyle Lovett has been charged with drug possession by the NSW police, according to a statement released by the club.

Tigers raise the bar with ‘Unfiltered’ interview series

Tigers raise the bar with ‘Unfiltered’ interview series

by , 21 Jan 2017

Over the off-season, the Wests Tigers have raised the bar in terms of producing original online content, with their ‘Unfiltered’ series. But the best interview thus far was released in in the past day or two, focussing on fullback James Tedesco.

Jarrod Mullen was injured, why can’t he use medicine to get better?

Jarrod Mullen was injured, why can’t he use medicine to get better?

by , 20 Jan 2017

Jarrod Mullen’s reported positive test made me reflect on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) code and whether it should prevent athletes from using drugs that are performance-enhancing but also therapeutic.

Barba’s return set to have Valentine looking for new Holmes

Barba’s return set to have Valentine looking for new Holmes

by , 20 Jan 2017

The Sharks’ decision to re-sign embattled fullback Ben Barba could do more harm than good for their squad in 2017.

What the NRL needs in 2017

What the NRL needs in 2017

by , 20 Jan 2017

Season 2017 of the National Rugby League comes at a time of great uncertainty around the game’s future direction and evolution.

Manly unveils eight debutants in Auckland Nines squad

Manly unveils eight debutants in Auckland Nines squad

by , 20 Jan 2017

Manly will boast eight new names at next month’s NRL Auckland Nines after coach Trent Barrett elected to rest many of his biggest stars.

Melbourne Storm set return date for Billy Slater

Melbourne Storm set return date for Billy Slater

by , 20 Jan 2017

Injury-hit fullback Billy Slater will make his return from a year on the sidelines in Melbourne’s NRL pre-season trial matches.

NRL integrity unit denied access to James Roberts nightclub vision

NRL integrity unit denied access to James Roberts nightclub vision

by , 20 Jan 2017

The NRL’s probe into allegations of misbehaviour against James Roberts have been complicated by a Gold Coast nightclub refusing to hand over video footage.

Two ARL commissioners step down: report

Two ARL commissioners step down: report

by , 19 Jan 2017

Prominent businessmen Graeme Samuel and Jeremy Sutcliffe have reportedly resigned as Australian Rugby League commissioners.

James Graham rubbishes reports, wants to remain top Dog

James Graham rubbishes reports, wants to remain top Dog

by , 19 Jan 2017

James Graham has rubbished claims he is looking to stand down as Canterbury skipper, insisting he wants to lead the side in the 201 NRL season.


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