New TV deal could see Origin moved to Sunday

After agreeing a colossal new free-to-air TV deal over the weekend to showcase the NRL, the governing body has also revealed that its flagship event, State of Origin, is set to move days.

NRL CEO Dave Smith revealed that as part of the new deal to show NRL on Channel Nine, Origin II is going to be switched to a standalone weekend and played on a Sunday, something Smith believes will keep the event as a marquee match.

“In other words, we are preserving Origin as a marquee event of the year while minimising disruption to the Premiership,” Smith said.

“This will not only improve player welfare but it will be fairer for the clubs and fans.”

The Premiership will also be reduced by one week from 26 to 25, with international rugby league will also be made a priority with a dedicated window set after the regular season.

This means the mid-season Test between the Kiwis and Kangaroos will be axed.