Rugby league traditionalists have been kicked in the guts once again with moves being made to move away from some of the most iconic football grounds in Sydney.
A report from sports minister Graham Annesley revealed that funding for grounds like Leichhardt Oval and Kogarah Oval was unsustainable moving forward.
“Review of stadia has identified the number of current venues requiring ongoing maintenance and or upgrading is financially unsustainable” Annesley reported.
“Stakeholders suggested there are too many Tier 2 stadia in Greater Sydney, and the present decentralised approach leads to under-utilisation of venues.”
One way or another, the Australian Rugby League Commission needs to act.
Most at risk are the Manly Sea-Eagles and Wests Tigers fans in the Macarthur region.
But there may be a silver lining for one of the great forgotten traditions of rugby league.
The Sunday afternoon double header could be the answer to the poor Sydney crowds in the National Rugby League. Some will say that the crowds are fine and everything is kosher.
Well unfortunately its not. Crowds in Sydney could be so much bigger. Whether it’s the price or the travel, fans are refusing to budge from their armchairs.
A monthly double header with Sydney clubs will bring the fans in. Who wouldn’t want to see two games for the price of one on a beautiful Sunday afternoon at ANZ Stadium or the Sydney Cricket Ground?
Entertainment for the kids, a lap of honour for legends and even throw in a rock band. The whole works with the main priority obviously on the games themselves.
Wests Tigers centre Chris Lawrence believes his side still has the ability to challenge for the title next season despite a number of changes at the merged club.
“Definitely mate we have a good mix of old and young players” Lawrence told FootySocial.
Lawrence also admitted what it would take to finally make his debut for the New South Wales Blues.
“A mix a good form, some luck with injuries and it obviously helps when the side is performing well.”