Eels eye ANZ Stadium for Dragons clash - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eels eye ANZ Stadium for Dragons clash

By Steve Jancetic 24/02/2010 08:08:55 PM Comments (0)

More than 50,000 fans could be on hand to usher in the new NRL season with Parramatta exploring the possibility of shifting its round one blockbuster with St George Illawarra to ANZ Stadium.

Eels chief executive Paul Osborne will meet with officials from Parramatta Stadium and ANZ Stadium on Thursday in a bid to nut out a deal to shift the season opener.

The meeting between last year's finals combatants would no doubt sell out the Eels' 20,000-seat home ground, but a move to the Olympic venue would more than likely see the gate double.

"It's because we want to get more people to the game," Osborne said of the club's motives.

"We've already got our two games at ANZ ... this would be an extra game there.

"We'll make a decision in the next 48 hours before tickets go on sale."

The major obstacle in moving the game would be the club's contract with Parramatta Stadium, with the likelihood of financial penalties should their quota of games at the venue not be fulfilled.

Meanwhile, Eels halfback Jeff Robson on Wednesday claimed there was room enough for him and playmaking rivals Daniel Mortimer and Kris Keating to co-exist in the same Eels side.

Robson was cast into the role of accidental hero last season when as third choice halfback he helped steer the Eels to an unlikely grand final berth.

The stunning run earned him a two-year contract, but with Kris Keating back on deck after breaking his jaw midway through 2009, Robson knows there are no guarantees he will keep hold of the No.7 jumper.

With last year's rookie sensation Daniel Mortimer seemingly having a mortgage on the five-eighth spot, there are seemingly three players battling it out for two positions, though Robson is adamant all three could fit into the 17-man squad.

"A bit of competition's always good - all I can do is play my best over the trials and hopefully get the starting spot in the No.7," Robson said.

"Kris Keating's been playing really well since coming back from injury. I'm kind of hoping there might be a spot for all three of us including Morts in the 17.

"Daniel (coach Daniel Anderson) hasn't said too much about it but either Kris or me could play a bit of nine if need be so it's always a possibility."

Keating and Robson will line up side by side in Saturday night's trial against the Sydney Roosters at Gosford, with Mortimer to miss the club's final trial after suffering a nasty head gash in last week's loss to Penrith.

Star fullback Jarryd Hayne will also be rested as he battles to overcome a sternum injury, while a decision on Eric Grothe (back) and Nathan Hindmarsh (wrist) will be made later in the week.

One man who is a definite starter against the Roosters is Timana Tahu, who will share time in the centres with Krisnan Inu, Joel Reddy and Johnathan Wright.

With such strikepower out wide, Robson admitted the pressure was on for him Keating and Mortimer to perform over the early rounds of the season.

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