Channel Nine want the NRL season cancelled and they will be put to the ultimate test in this meeting involving the biggest names from Foxtel, ARLC and Nine.
Channel Nine want the NRL season cancelled and they will be put to the ultimate test in this meeting involving the biggest names from Foxtel, ARLC and Nine.

Nine’s love for league put to test in high-powered meeting

Channel 9's commitment to rugby league will be put to the test after Fox Sports reaffirmed their commitment to the code.

Head of Fox Sports Peter Campbell and head of television at Fox Sports Steve Crawley conducted a video hook-up with NRL boss Todd Greenberg and chief operating officer Andrew Abdo on Wednesday morning.

While neither party talked publicly, it is understood the Fox Sports duo threw their support behind the resumption of the NRL as soon as the game is able to get up and running.

Foxtel chief executive Patrick Delany.
Foxtel chief executive Patrick Delany.

 

Steve Crawley, head of television at Fox Sports.
Steve Crawley, head of television at Fox Sports.

But the big test come when ARLC chairman Peter V'landys meets with rival network bosses Patrick Delany (Foxtel) and Hugh Marks (Nine).

It follows Marks' meeting with V'landys on Tuesday where the Nine Network wanted to be part of league long-term but had reservations about the resumption of the competition this year.

This follows public comments that Nine would save $130 million if the NRL season was scrapped.

V'landys described the talks with Marks as "constructive and co-operative".

But that will all come to a head in a meeting to take place on Thursday or Friday.

If Nine intend on changing any part of their broadcast deal they must do so with Fox Sports who currently has a commitment to showcase all eight matches live.

Thursday, one Friday game and a Sunday match are simulcast with Nine but Fox Sports retain exclusive rights for their trademark Super Saturday.

It has been reported that Nine wanted to attain some exclusive matches including the Friday 6pm match in exchange for Fox League to show Thursday night matches alone.

Fox are not keen to relinquish any matches.

Nine Entertainment CEO Hugh Marks.
Nine Entertainment CEO Hugh Marks.

 

ARLC chairman Peter V'landys.
ARLC chairman Peter V'landys.

The meeting will also have a major impact on how the competition looks for this season including how many matches are played and how deep the networks are willing to allow rugby league to be played in the year.

Greenberg and Delany spoke on Tuesday.

Originally published as Nine's love for league put to test in high-powered meeting


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