Covid chaos: How NRL will choose the 13,000 ticket holders who will miss Grand Final




Around 13,000 people who purchased their tickets last will be told they can no longer attend the NRL grand final as the game suffers another huge headache just three sleeps out from the showpiece event.

It comes as Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk confirmed parts of Queensland would be heading back to stage 2 restrictions following more coronavirus cases including a 75 per cent limit at stadiums.

That means both Suncorp Stadium for the NRL and Cbus Stadium for the Rugby Championship would have to abide by the new rules.

There was plenty of confusion about what the new rules would mean but the NRL confirmed it will be a last in, first out policy with tickets.

NRL Chief Executive Andrew Abdo said a “first in” policy was the fairest way to determine the allocation of tickets at a reduced capacity. All fans would also have the opportunity to access a refund if they no longer wish to attend and can do so by contacting Ticketek. Fans impacted by the reduction in capacity will be advised today.

“We had two allocations of Grand Final tickets. The first was to the general public and the second was aimed at fans of both Grand Final teams,” Mr Abdo said.

“The fairest way to determine who can attend the game is by prioritising the first 75% to purchase tickets in each allocation. Any fan who no longer wants to attend will also be able to access a refund.”

One COVID case is at Townsville which will have NRL administrators doubly concerned. Townsville was considered a backup location for the NRL grand final should south-east Queensland be placed in a lockdown.

For the Rugby Championship, it comes as eight of the Argentina touring party including six players were denied entry into Queensland after a day trip to Byron Bay.

The reduced capacity is a double blow for Rugby Australia after almost making it through the entire Championship without another COVID-related issue after all hope seemed lost at the start of the tournament when New Zealand delayed their trip to Perth.

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