Its a massive day for sports news of all varieties. The 2019 Ausplay survey has been released, The Storm relocate to Albury, while the A-league prepares for August restart and theres some Rugby CEO speculation thrown in to a big news mix,
2019 Ausplay Survey
- For those working in community sport, the increased screen dependency of children is creating the understandable fear there will be a missing generation of participants if we are unable to raise them from the couch when the new normality begins.
- Sports are part of fans’ identities; they are suffering a strange kind of loss
A-league and Football
- A-League clubs are preparing for a competition re-start in August with Wellington Phoenix to base in NSW for a two-week quarantine period.
- A-League players are prepared to relocate to a Sydney-based hub to finish the season and have been “energised” by Fox Sports’ decision to support the competition’s resumption, according to their union boss John Didulica.
- There is no way the English Premier League will complete its fractured season in Perth essentially because such a bold and unrealistic concept would require permission from Football Federation Australia to come to fruition.
- Rising fees come down hardest on players who already face multiple cultural and financial barriers to entry, especially women and girls from minority and migrant backgrounds. One Perth club may have the answer.
AFL and Australian Football
- AFL.com.au reports that a new second tier competition could be on the cards for the eastern seaboard
- Clubs have begun to recall players with the expectation that hubs will not be required.
- An AFL hub could still be on the cards for two teams in the league, as Western Australia’s border restrictions emerge as a stumbling block for the restart of the season.
- The VFL season remains up in the air, but Sandringham says if it does go ahead players will have to play for nothing unless the AFL covers all costs.
- Brodie Smith and Tom Rockliff say they like an ambitious pitch from the Northern Territory to the AFL, where games could be played in front of crowds.
- TASMANIAN Premier Peter Gutwein has offered up northern Tasmania as an AFL hub to league chief executive Gillon McLachlan.
ARU and Rugby Union
- Rugby Australia is likely to be turned on its head as news circulated late Monday night that Peter Wiggs was about to replace Paul McLean as chairman and Matt Carroll may be approached as the new chief executive officer, to replace Raelene Castle.
- Rugby’s ruling body SANZAAR has tried to hose down calls for a permanent trans-Tasman solution to Super Rugby as rogue speculation that is undermining the four-nation coalition.
- Rugby Australia has submitted a 29-page ‘Return to Play Manual’ to the federal government, containing its strict biosecurity plans for a home-and-away domestic competition to begin in early July.
- Prompted by an uptick in users during the coronavirus pandemic, YouTube’s EMEA head of sport, Tomos Grace, has confirmed the Google-owned platform is targeting more live sports broadcasts.
- COVID-19-ravaged England is poised to send an SOS to Australia’s cricketers to rescue the old enemy from financial calamity. England’s schedule has been thrown into disarray by the pandemic, but they are in talks with West Indies to tour in July and are hopeful of hosting Australia in September.
- Problem with T20 World Cup wont be the teams, it will be the crowds – minister
NBL and Basketball
- As winter sports battle to recover their seasons amid the COVID-19 crisis, there is still a sliver of hope the NBL could start on time — and with fans allowed to attend games.
NRL and Rugby League
- The Australian notes that the NRL is yet to see full value of its digital division
- Melbourne Storm’s NRL squad will relocate to the NSW border town of Albury for their initial training camp to prepare for the resumption of the NRL season on May 28.
- Melbourne Storm has had to relocate across the border to allow the NRL season to resume, but it is nothing compared to what Warriors players are doing.
- Even before Warriors players and staff agreed to leave their families behind and relocate to Tamworth to ensure the viability of the restructured NRL season, the New Zealand club was already considered one of the most valuable in the competition.
- The NRL’s chief financial officer, Tony Crawford, has followed his former boss Todd Greenberg out the door at rugby league headquarters.
- NRL clubs including arch rivals the Roosters and Rabbitohs could merge under a proposal to play fortnightly trial matches to give players outside the top 17 at each club regular match conditioning.
- TASMANIA’S racing industry received another slap in the face yesterday when Premier Peter Gutwein confirmed he was in favour of Tasmania being a part of an AFL hub but made no mention of racing being given a restart date.
- Network Ten is believed to be preparing to walk away from being the free-to-air broadcaster of V8 Supercars when the current contract runs out this season as Australian media companies weigh up the value of sports rights amid the COVID-19 crisis.
- UFC 251, originally scheduled for June 7th at Perth’s RAC Arena, has been postponed due to ongoing government restrictions on mass public gatherings.
- The National Basketball Association (NBA) is exploring the possibility of delaying the start of the 2020/21 season until December to allow more time for the 2019/20 campaign to be completed, according to ESPN.
- The horsemen are circling and for Leagues One and Two the apocalypse is nigh. For Darragh MacAnthony, the owner of Peterborough, the day of reckoning will come in July or August, when payments deferred during football’s pause can be put off no longer. VAT and PAYE will have to be settled; suppliers and, for some clubs, players and members of staff will need their money.
- The players due to take part in the Hundred this summer have been informed their contracts have been terminated in a letter from the England and Wales Cricket Board.
- La Liga has confirmed that Spain’s footballers will go back to training this week, the first step in a month-long process towards a return to competition. The hope is that First and Second Division games can begin in mid-June.
- The NFL has called off its annual International Series games in London and Mexico City this year amid the coronavirus pandemic.