CEOs meet to take NRL 'to another level' - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

CEOs meet to take NRL 'to another level'

Joe Barton 29/11/2010 08:52:00 PM Comments (0)

Expansion, a monster TV deal, a New Zealand-based Origin concept and the finalisation of the independent commission were the main topics designed to take rugby league to the next level at the annual NRL CEO conference on Thursday.

Representatives from all 16 clubs gathered on Monday for the annual chief executives' and chairmen's conference, where NRL boss David Gallop said the NRL commission could be confirmed this week with the formal adoption of a constitution.

The model, to unite all of the sport's management structures under a single body, is the biggest change in rugby league history and Gallop confirmed that only "drafting" issues needed to be resolved.

"The reports to the annual conference today suggest that the ground work is all but finalised and that in the weeks ahead the task will be for News Limited and the ARL to begin determining the Commissioners," Gallop said on Monday.

"This is a process that was born out of a chief executives strategic planning conference in May 2008 and (Gold Coast CEO) Michael Searle, who has headed the Game Restructure Committee since then, has today outlined the final steps in the process.

"It promises to be a significant move forward and one that will have benefits across the game."

With the independent commission resolved, the conference turned attention to growing rugby league in the next five years.

Among the topics discussed, the most pressing involved expansion, a two-conference system, the prospect of a New Zealand Origin concept and the importance of a new broadcast deal when current contracts expire at the end of the 2012 season.

"Absolutely there's a lot of discussion about the new broadcast deal and there's a lot of work going on behind the scenes getting ourselves ready and well positioned for it," Canterbury boss Todd Greenburg told AAP.

"I think the game is in very good shape to strike a very good deal when the rights are being renegotiated.

"I think first of all everyone is very much on the same page in that the game has grown significantly over the last five years.

"Everything is heading in the right direction and the key now is maximise that and take it to another level in the next five years."

The conference, which is being held in Byron Bay, will continue on Tuesday.

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