NRL to push ahead with plan for May 28 restart pending broadcast negotiations

The NRL will push forward with plans to restart the season on May 28 but will need to come to an agreement with its broadcast partners over the value of the rights deal before signing off on the proposal.

As revealed by the Herald on Wednesday afternoon, the NRL put two proposals on the table and planned to consult with clubs and players before deciding on either a 15-round competition that would see all teams play each other once or a 16-round, two-conference system.

However, the Herald has been told by sources with knowledge of the discussions that tense broadcast negotiations have forced them to rethink those plans, with the NRL now considering fulfilling its contractual obligations and playing the remaining 22 rounds of football that could see the competition head into November.

The innovation committee meeting on Thursday, which lasted almost four hours and included a special appearance from South Sydney coach Wayne Bennett, also decided that State of Origin series would be played in the middle of the season. A May 21 season return now seems unlikely.


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