It could be locals only when the Warriors return to Tamworth and take on the Knights
Updated: Aug 11, 2020
The highly anticipated NRL game has been confirmed for Saturday 29th August as the NZ Warriors return to Tamworth and face off against the Newcastle Knights at Scully Park.
NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro today announced the regional game saying thanks to Tamworth for hosting the NZ Warriors for their quarantine.
"Rugby might have started in Sydney but its heart is in the bush," said Mr Barilaro.
Australian Rugby League Commission Chairman Peter V'landys said without Tamworth's assistance it would not have been possible for the NRL to recommence on the 28th May.
According to Mr V'landys without Tamworth's assistance, the NRL would have quarantined the NZ Warriors in a city hotel meaning they could not have commenced training.
"It would've meant that the 28th of May would not have been possible, because we would've waited another two weeks after that to get every team on a level playing field," said Mr V'landys.
Whilst Mr V'landys slated a possible crowd of 5000 people depending on COVID-19 infections rates in the state, information in the Tamworth Regional Council's meeting agenda for the 11th August states the crowd capacity will be capped at 3000.
Member for Tamworth Kevin Anderson said it's great news for rugby league fans in the Tamworth region.
Considering some local concerns that travelling fans could bring COVID-19 to the region Mr Anderson said discussions are in motion to limit entry to Tamworth and North West residents.
"Welfare and safety of our community is first and foremost and sits above everything we do," Mr Anderson said.
"Wests Entertainment Group has a very strict, high-level biosecurity plan in place".
Mr Anderson said Wests demonstrated their COVID-19 Safe protocols earlier in the year when they first hosted the NZ Warriors.
"There are discussions being had about limiting spectators to the New England, North West, meaning no Sydney or no Hunter Valley people will be allowed to attend the game," Mr Anderson said.
Tamworth Regional Council will vote at the upcoming council meeting on Tuesday the 11th August whether or not to continue with a previously approved $20,000 sponsorship.