Another big day in Sports Industry news, with a new interim CEO at Rugby Australia, Vlandys says Nines talk is just noise and a deal is expected within the fortnight, and Optus nabs the rights to the K-league.
A-league and Football
- Clubs are planning to train in July before a competition return in August, though Football Federation Australia (FFA) is yet to outline firm resumption dates.
- Brisbane Roar will support the idea of a NSW hub to complete an A-League season that needs to be finished by August 31.
AFL and Australian Football
- AFL plays smart game as plans to restart season begin to take shape
- The AFL’s hopes of avoiding hubs to restart the 2020 have taken a hit after Western Australia’s Premier reaffirmed the state’s hard line border stance due to COVID-19.
- Adelaide and Port Adelaide are set to be granted special exemptions to fly in and out of South Australia for games but there’s a catch — and it means there could be no footy in the state.
- South Australia is unlikely to welcome in AFL teams during the early part of a rebooted season while interstate COVID-19 infection rates remain high, Premier Steven Marshall says.
- In a bid to resurrect Melbourne’s widespread grassroots footy competitions, AFL Victoria has put a crucial appeal to Cricket Victoria, with the pandemic creating “possibly the greatest challenge each of our sports have ever faced’’.
ARU and Rugby Union
- In a single day Rugby Australia had its incoming chairman resign, the interim chairman appointed an interim CEO, and the man touted as the long-term CEO had withdrawn his interest.
- Rugby Australia (RA) has appointed Rob Clarke as its interim chief executive, as it continues to search for a full-time replacement for Raelene Castle.
- ARL Commission chair Peter V’landys isn’t concerned about the Nine Network threatening to walk away from the game in the near future, saying the broadcaster has a contract to fulfil.
- ARL Commission chairman Peter V’landys has revealed rugby league’s revised broadcast deal will be finalised in the next fortnight – clearing the final hurdle for the NRL’s Project Apollo launch on May 28.
- Optus Sport will be the first local broadcaster to resume live broadcasting of a major football code this week after securing the Australian rights to South Korea’s K League for 2020.
- With Cricket Australia struggling to cope with the effects of lockdown, the Sheffield Shield and the WBBL will both suffer the consequences of the game’s financial crisis.
- CRICKET Tasmania has not ruled out selling more Hurricanes games interstate as it tries to save its “dire” finances as a result of COVID-19.
- CRICKET Tasmania has had to cut almost 30 per cent of its staff, but there is a fear there could be more pain to come.
- Netball SA will renew its bid for a $23 million upgrade of its Mile End stadium and will again lobby the state and federal governments.
NRL and Rugby League
- After Prime Minister Scott Morrison called for a “no jab, no play” stance on NRL anti-vaxxers, ARL Commission chairman Peter V’landys is set to enter talks with the RLPA to encourage players to agree to flu shots before the May 28 restart.
- Iconic suburban ground Leichhardt Oval is set to become one of the Sydney venues to host NRL competition games in the isolation bubble.
- ARL Commission chair Peter V’landys has said he will have broadcast talks settled by the end of next week and has demonstrated his conviction to the clubs with an $80 million-plus rescue package for the rest of this season.
- The Australian Open may be eight months away and partitioned by a new year, but the organisers are already mindful of the possibility that it may not take place.
- CORONAVIRUS WRAP: The first NHL player has tested positive to COVID-19, while major European soccer leagues have their eye on a May return and hope is fading for an iconic cycling race.
- NBA teams are expected to get the go-ahead to reopen practice facilities for limited use as early as Friday, less than two months after the coronavirus outbreak forced the suspension of the season.
- The Premier League season could be cancelled if teams do not agree to play the remaining 92 fixtures in neutral venues amid the COVID-19 pandemic, says League Managers Association chief executive Richard Bevan.
- Major League Baseball expects to offer a return-to-play proposal to the MLB Players Association within a week as teams have begun to encourage players to prepare for a “spring” training that could begin in mid-June and a season that would start in early July
- The Bundesliga in Germany is set to become Europe’s first major football league to resume playing during the coronavirus pandemic, with a restart confirmed for this month, it was announced on Wednesday.
- The International Swimming League (ISL) is planning to roll out its own over-the-top (OTT) service by the end of June