Politician Appears Convinced NRL Will Not Move Grand Final
Opposition Leader Michael Daley "will go down in history" as the person who cost Sydney the National Rugby League grand final if he wins the state election in March, according to Danny Weidler of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. Daley, who has been in the job for less than a month, "stunned all the major football codes" when he announced last week that "he would stop all new stadium funding." Daley did not consult any of the key players "before dropping the bombshell." In fact, he made the announcement at Moore Park -- a few steps from the office of NRL CEO Todd Greenberg -- and still did not tell him. Daley appears to believe the NRL "is bluffing and would not dare to take the grand final interstate." Nothing "could be further from the truth." Other states, particularly Queensland and Victoria, "would pay big money to steal the NRL decider from NSW." Victoria, for example, would be able to host the Australian Rugby League and NRL grand finals on consecutive weekends. The tourism benefits of that doubleheader "would be amazing." The NRL is also "keen to prove it is not Sydney-centric" -- that is why it is taking Origin matches to Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth. The only reason the NRL previously agreed to keep the grand final in Sydney is the Gladys Berejiklian government agreed to "pour" A$1.8B ($1.3B) into a "decent stadiums network" for the city (SMH, 12/1).