Government approves NRL on GEM outside NSW, Qld.

Updated: Nine will show NRL games on GEM in Victoria, WA, SA and Tasmania starting from Friday.

UPDATED: The government has approved Nine’s proposal to screen NRL games on GEM in in Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania.

NRL will now be Live around the country -on either Nine or GEM- on Friday nights, beginning from this week. Sunday afternoon games will be 4pm in each market.

“This is a win-win situation for all the stakeholders – the viewers in these markets, the NRL, the Federal Government and of course Nine, whose joint mission is to bring the game to as many people as possible,” Jeffrey Browne, Nine Network Managing Director, said.

“We are particularly grateful for Minister Conroy’s positive and prompt consideration of the network’s application to make it a reality.”

From round five of the NRL, the southern markets will broadcast two games in Friday Night Football, one live at 7.30pm AEST and the next one at 9.30pm AEST. Then on Sunday afternoon, a third match will go to air at 4.00pm nationally.

Friday Night Football:
NSW / QLD: 7:30-11:30pm on Nine
Victoria and Tasmania: 7:30-11:30pm on GEM
South Australia: 7:00-10:00pm on GEM
Western Australia: 4:30-8:30pm on GEM

Sunday Afternoon Football:
NSW / QLD: 4:00-6:00pm on Nine
Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania: 4:00-6:00pm on GEM

The NRL Sunday Footy Show airs in Sydney and Brisbane live at 11.00am on Nine, will be shown at 2.00pm on GEM in Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania in the lead-up to Sunday Afternoon Football at 4.00pm.

If the Melbourne Storm is scheduled to play on a Friday night, this will always be the first game to be broadcast, Live from 7.30pm in Melbourne.

Earlier story: The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Nine has applied to the government to show NRL games on GEM in Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania.

The move would surely appease fans of the code who have had to continually wait until late night (or even early mornings) to watch games.

It would also match Seven screening AFL on 7mate in some states.

But in some cases it may mean viewers in ‘southern states’ are watching games before they air in NSW and Queensland. It also isn’t clear if they would also be enjoying them in HD while the two key markets are potentially lumbered with SD broadcasts.

Under the new Anti-Siphoning List tiers, Nine will be able to play all but the Grand Final on its multichannel, but while these are (still) yet to be legislated, Nine must apply to Minister Conroy for permission.

“The minister has indicated his support for increased coverage of sport on free-to-air television in the past,” a Nine spokesperson said. “If and when we obtain approval, we will commence coverage.”

19 Responses

  1. @kenny In Syd/Bris last night, the AFL attracted a combinded 91000 viewers.
    Seriously, what harm is it doing for 9 to show the NRL as an alternative to its programming via GEM?
    I (like a few people I imagine), will at least use the GEM coverage to keep updated on the score.

  2. Wasn’t aware that NSW/Qld don’t get all 3 games live every week.
    At least the rest of the country now gets a choice.
    Thanks for including Tassie in this article too, much appreciated!

  3. What a mess – NRL in HD outside the NRL strongholds, and on what was supposed to be a female orientated channel too.

    It would be interesting to know what state digital TV in Australia would be in if there hadn’t been so much red tape – in someways you were better served when you had a HD simulcast of the main channel which just broke away occassionally. Australia must be one of the few countries in the world now where the main channels are not available in HD. Even S4C here in Wales has managed a HD channel.

  4. Now all we need is for Channel 9 to offer the ability to watch the NSW Game live in QLD (for those of us who don’t want QLD gushing and raving shoved down our throat via Ray Hadley, Darren Lockyer & Wally Lewis every Friday Night @ 7.30pm) and then i’ll be the happiest fan in the world.

    At least Vossy was somewhat neutral and had a more unbiased commentary team with him most Brisbane Games (Wally can usually break down and be unbiased when warranted) – I really miss him on the NRL games and hope they decide to bring him back soon…especially since they never really announced he was going away either – and the Roast is sorely lacking without him!

  5. LOLZ…
    Happy for all you fans outside of the League mothership states.Enjoy it on GEM.
    I just find it hilarious that nine wait until just a few months before the next deal will be finalised to do anything.

  6. Great move on 9’s behalf. They could always show 2 games at the same time in NRL states on Fridays. NRL fans will win out of this. Nine should have allowed the Sunday game to be live but better than being shown at 11:30pm. AFL are now lucky to get games live as Seven usually delayed Friday night matches an hour or more and Sundays were usually delayed.

  7. Halle-friggen-lujah!!!! Seriously what has taken them so long? I’m with Guy, it is ironic that only now that Nine is trying to win the rights back, they finally decide to act. Just checked, and NRL is scheduled for 7pm and 9pm Friday night in Adelaide on GEM, and 4pm on Sunday on GEM. See Nine it wasn’t that bloody hard was it.

  8. Funny feeling this was going to happen just thankful they have put this in print. Just why they didn’t start doing this when they first did this for the cricket I will never know.

  9. With more talk about the expansion big going to W.A., Nine would be smart to try and get the NRL’s popularity up in all states. I just hate how Nine show Sunday football on an hour delay when there doesn’t appear to be any reason for except that they want it to get their viewer numbers up in the primetime ratings – which is just low putting ratings before viewers.

Leave a Reply