NRL 2021 COVID-19 Brisbane Outbreak - Broncos Relocated
29th March 2021
The Broncos relocated to Sydney last week following a COVID-19 outbreak in Brisbane and Byron Bay. The announcement of a snap, three-day lockdown by Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk was followed by Victoria's stance, which requires a permit and 14 days quarantine to be observed to enter the state from 6pm on Monday. Kevin Walters's side flew out of Brisbane to Sydney on a chartered flight at 4pm AEDT, where they will prepare for Friday's grudge match with the Storm. Speaking before the Victorian government's update, NRL head of football Graham Annesley said the clash would go ahead as scheduled at Melbourne's AAMI Park. However, the prospect of shifting the match to Sydney, as part of a Good Friday double header at Stadium Australia after the traditional Bulldogs-Rabbitohs fixture, has also been discussed. The Broncos will based in Sydney after round four regardless of where the Storm game is played given they face South Sydney on Thursday, April 8.
NRL 2021 COVID-19 Brisbane Outbreak - Level 2 Protocols Activated
30th March 2021
Amid Queensland's COVID-19 outbreak, restrictions have again been placed on NRL players and officials. All players were on Tuesday ordered into level-two protocols, which included wearing masks indoors when they could not socially distance and temperature checks at grounds and training. Public transport is off limits again, while players and key staff have been told they should only catch taxis or ride-share services when there is no alternative. Meanwhile, Brisbane's growing coronavirus cases forced other ramifications across the NRL on Tuesday. Canterbury players and officials have been placed into a bubble and are on stay-at-home orders, only able to leave their house to train and play after being in Brisbane last weekend.
NRL 2021 COVID-19 Brisbane Outbreak - Queensland Round 4 Matches Relocated
31st March 2021
Saturday’s NRL Telstra Premiership Matches scheduled to be played in southeast Queensland will be relocated to Netstrata Jubilee Stadium in Sydney on a risk-based approach to ensuring continuity in the competition. The relocations are:
The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs have also been forced to move their Round Five match versus the Melbourne Storm from HBF Park in Perth to Stadium Australia, after COVID related issues around travel meant that the fixture could not be guaranteed to go ahead.
NRL Chief Executive Andrew Abdo said the relocation ensured there was no risk to Premiership games proceeding this weekend. "Our priority is ensuring all matches proceed this weekend. While the infection rates in southeast Queensland are positive today, the risk of further outbreaks emerging between now and Saturday exists," he said. "By confirming the relocation of games today all clubs, players and fans have certainty to plan for the weekend’s fixtures and as a game we eliminate the risk around whether those matches will take place. I want to thank all clubs who are making sacrifices for the greater good of our game. These are difficult decisions to make but decisions that ensure our competition continues this weekend without interruption. I also want to acknowledge our fans. I know fans on the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast were looking forward to going to these games. We were particularly excited to be taking a game to the Sunshine Coast. However our priority must be ensuring we can complete Round 4 without risk of losing matches."
NRL 2021 COVID-19 Brisbane Outbreak - Australian Schools Championship Cancelled
3rd April 2021
On 9 March 2021, the Board for School Sport Australia met to review the 2021 national sporting championship program. The Board determined that due to the ongoing volatility of COVID-19 and the complexity that this may cause for teams travelling interstate, all planned 2021 national events are now cancelled. As a result, the ASSRL Council with the support of the National Rugby League (NRL), has made the decision to cancel the 2021 joint National Championships for 15 and 18 Years Rugby League that were to be held at Redcliffe, Queensland from July 1 2021. State School Rugby League organisations will continue with all planned district, regional and state competitions in 2021. The ASSRL will endeavour to provide a representative pathway for the 18 Years age-group in 2021 through the selection of an Australian Schoolboys team from state championships in New South Wales, Queensland and in the Combined Affiliated States. The ASSRL would like to acknowledge the support of Moreton Bay Regional Council, Redcliffe Dolphins Rugby League, Queensland School Sport Rugby League 13-18 Years, Redcliffe State High School and the NRL for their significant work towards hosting the championships.
NRL 2021 COVID-19 Brisbane Outbreak - Restrictions End
15th April 2021
Greater Brisbane’s lockdown ended on the 1st of April. Thanks to the cooperation and sacrifices of so many, all Queenslanders can now celebrate Easter with family and loved ones. Importantly, a number of restrictions remained in place for all Queenslanders to protect against further transmission of COVID-19 for the next two weeks. Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the three-day Greater Brisbane lockdown had proven successful in limiting the spread of COVID-19 in Queensland.
Finally on April 15, Queenslanders can take off the face-mask as the COVID-19 restrictions of the past two weeks roll back this morning. This marked a return to normal for the Sunshine State following a snap three-day lockdown last month. Masks are no longer mandatory in indoor venues across the state, though health advice states that they should still be worn when social distancing isn't possible, such as while in a ride-share.
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