NRL boss Todd Greenberg has left the door open for Brisbane to host a grand final when ANZ Stadium in Sydney undergoes its extreme makeover.
The Olympic site will be refurbished to transform it into a purpose-built rectangular stadium as part of a $1.6 billion investment in stadia strategy announced by the NSW state government on Wednesday.
Parramatta will have a brand new stadium, while Allianz Stadium will also get a facelift.
Part of the agreement includes the NRL giving the NSW state government rights to their October showpiece for 20 years once the upgrade is complete, but questions remain over where it will be held during it.
The reconfiguration, which is expected to include a roof, is expected to take at least three years and won’t begin until after the completion of the new stadium at Parramatta.
“During the transition, there’s not a strong appetite from us to be playing in construction. We’ll have to look at it,” Greenberg said.
“We’ll talk first and foremost to the NSW government about those sorts of challenges. There’s going to be some challenges during the transition phase, but that’s part of getting to the much bigger picture.”
Asked whether the decider would be moved to Moore Park, which won’t get touched until the completion of the venue at Homebush, Greenberg said: “Those are all things on the table.”
ARLC chairman John Grant has previously expressed a desire to bring the grand final to Suncorp Stadium, however Greenberg, less than a month after being appointed CEO, made no apologies for committing to Sydney.
The former Canterbury boss said the game’s other major events like world cups, Indigenous All Stars games and the Auckland Nines were up for grabs.
But the grand final was untouchable.
“It’s fair to say that when government puts $1.6 billion on the table, there’s an expectation that some premium content will go with it,” he said.
“It makes sense to me. It’s been in Sydney for 100 years and it’s going to be here for many more.”
Greenberg also confirmed that the government’s announcement came without any firm commitment from clubs to play their games at the new venues, contrary to previous speculation of a 65-game content plan.
“There is no agreement with any club that they have to do anything different to what they currently do,” he said.
“They’re decisions for clubs, and they’re entitled to make those decisions when this network of stadia comes on board.