Nine signs new 5 year deal for NRL rights

Major new deal to 2027 includes State of Origin & NRL Grand Final.

Nine has signed a new five-year deal for NRL broadcast rights from 2023 to 2027, rumoured to be worth somewhere between $575m -$650m.

The deal also includes exclusive rights to the State of Origin series, and the NRL Grand Final with a commentary team including Billy Slater, Cameron Smith, and Johnathan Thurston.

The new deal will give Nine three additional matches across the season, plus new digital rights for 9Now live streaming and catch-up viewing.

State of Origin will return to Wednesday nights and Nine will continue its commitment to the women’s game with expanded broadcast, digital offerings and reporting of the NRLW competition.

Nine has also secured the radio and audio streaming rights broadcast in Sydney and Brisbane through 2GB and 4BC, extending Nine’s NRL reach and aligning TV and exclusive radio rights on 4.00pm Sunday games. Plus, all Broncos versus Dolphins games will stream live in Brisbane.

Peter Costello, Nine Chairman said: ‘This is a major deal for our business to bring this exciting sport to the Australian public across our platforms. The negotiation has been constructive and in the spirit of partnership across our businesses and we thank the NRL for the positive engagement in the process for an outcome that benefits all Australians and fans of the game.’

Australian Rugby League Commission Chairman Peter V’landys said: “Today is an exciting day for our fans with the free to air broadcast deal of the NRL Telstra Premiership, NRLW and Ampol State of Origin locked in until the end of 2027. This is more than a broadcast deal, it’s a partnership to grow rugby league using all of Nine’s media platforms – television, radio and print. It was a priority for the Commission to secure the long term future of the game. In doing so it was important to ensure that a long term partnership reflected the Commission’s desire to grow the game at all levels, to invest in innovation and to ensure we have a partner that can help grow the game from participation to pathway competitions and premierships,’’ he said.

“I want to thank Nine Chairman Peter Costello and Chief Executive Mike Sneesby for their commitment to rugby league and loyalty to our game, the most watched sport in Australia this year.”

Mike Sneesby, CEO of Nine, said “We are very pleased to extend our 30-year partnership with the NRL for a further five years. This certainty enables both Nine and the NRL to continue to bring the game live and free to all Australians and to develop the game for the clubs and the broader NRL community. This is an outstanding result as together we build a strong media partnership delivering quality, and free, NRL coverage for all Australians for the next six years.”

Brent Williams, Nine’s Head of Sport, said “For 30 years, Rugby League has played a major role in the history of Wide World of Sports and we’re delighted to be extending our association at a time when the sport is entering such an exciting growth period.

“While Nine will continue to be the exclusive home of the game’s biggest events, we look forward to partnering with the NRL to help the continuing growth of the Women’s game and to develop targeted grassroots initiatives. We’re excited to collaborate with the clubs and players of all levels to deliver new broadcast initiatives and digital offerings across our multiple platforms.”

20 Responses

  1. This is absolutely gross. Anyone who thinks that this deal is in the “best interest” of viewers or Australians needs to have a serious look at themselves. We have seen several times this year the NRL bows to the needs and wants of Nine. Let’s see if in the coming years Nine and the NRL will schedule games in the best interest of viewers or if the games are set up in the best interest of Nine. I bet everyone already knows the answer.

  2. Yeesss… What great news, finally the best news to hear in a very long time.
    Go Channel Nine & NRL, and fantastic more additional games.
    More games/events better the for the Greatest Sport in the World, and means even more exposure.!

  3. we need to make something very clear when it comes to coverage. They use the same cameras and crews to cover 90% of the games, sure they change graphics and sometimes may have an additional camera here or there, and of course different commentators but the game its self is the same cameras and crew. Quite often the 9 cameras will simulcast to FOX with different hostings and commentators, so to rabbit on about poor coverage is fine but you need to explain what it is. not just phil gould

  4. I guess once seven extended their rights to AFL beyond 2022 (I think to end of 2024), that made nine’s effort to bluff the NRL all but impossible. V’landy quote that NRL is the most watched sport is a bit rich? Does anyone know how he can make this claim? On Fox/FTA at least, AFL has more eyeballs.

    1. The NRL broadcast is streamed around the world including to the UK, Europe, Africa, Asia, USA and Canada, as is the AFL though not quite to the same extent as the NRL. Adding all viewership together, and considering that Rugby League does have a large global following, Mr V’landy may have a point if he’s comparing the NRL coverage with the AFL.

      1. Fair enough. But from Seven and Nines perspective, their advertisement revenue is based on Ozzie eyeballs. I guess this is not of concern to Mr. V’Landy. I swear this guy could sell anything…..

  5. I was so hopeful that the FTA rights would have been spread across the 3 networks, just to change it up. Season proper on 9, State of Origin on 7 and the Finals on 10. Of course, Fox retain their current telecast levels. And what happened to the NRL demanding 9 do more magazine style shows – no mention of that…

  6. The way Channel 9 treated NRL for the past 15 years has been dreadful. We are fed up with games that kick off late and fans are fed up with 9’s coverage. I’m fed up with Thier coverage. Sadly we had to put up with Nine’s coverage for many years to come.

  7. Please do not let Nine have exclusive rights to State of Origin and Grand Final live!!!
    Many regional areas do not have great free to air reception. People instead rely on Foxtel and other streaming services via satellite or internet. It needs to be on free to air and also available via streaming services!

    1. As it says in the article:

      “The new deal will give Nine three additional matches across the season, plus new digital rights for 9Now live streaming and catch-up viewing.”

      So it appears Nine will have the rights to Stream their televised Games on 9Now live as well as over Free To Air, which is great and sorely missing from the Seven AFL deal. So even if that means that the Nine Televised Games won’t be on Kayo they will still be on Nine Now and Kayo will still have the Foxtel Games on there (not much will change really).

      1. Sorry left a bit out, I should have said I am also surmising that as part of those new digital rights for 9Now live that State of Origin and the Grand Final are part of that, given the way the Ratings are changing being measured that is a huge get for Nine and 9Now.

  8. I don’t know why channel nine is still have the NRL rights as it has been going on for over 30 years I thought another network will have the rights to this.
    So we will have to wait until 2027 for the next broadcast deal which hopefully another network/streaming service will get the rights for the NRL.

    1. Reading between the lines still with it as it says Nine gets 3 more games, so be similar to AFL and Foxtel will have all the ones Nine don’t and guessing be able to show Nine’s Broadcast as part of it on the NRL Channel and Kayo.

    2. Fox League already have a broadcast deal till 2028! They are live on all trial games including the Charity Shield, NRL Womens, all games in the NRL season and all finals except The Grand Final! They have no rights for State Of Origin!

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