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Pirtek National Premiership Returns to Sky TV


Pirtek National Premiership Returns to Sky TV

Auckland, NZ, August 5, 2013 – New Zealand Rugby League’s Pirtek National Premiership returns to SKY TV on Monday nights from early September.

The competition ran on SKY last year with a game from Mt Smart each week featuring either Auckland’s Akarana Falcons or the Counties Manukau Stingrays. Mt Smart will again be the centre of the action this year, but teams from throughout the country will meet in the televised matches, starting with the Wellington Orcas against the Waicoa Bay Stallions on Monday, September 2.

The draw for the competition, which has just been released, sees seven rounds of action among the seven zones before a final at Mt Smart on Monday, October 21.

“It’s fabulous to have SKY recommitting to grassroots rugby league,” says the NZRL’s CEO Phil Holden. “Their coverage provides a great opportunity for our local heroes to make a name for themselves.”

SKY’s Director of Sport Richard Last is also thrilled that Pirtek National Premiership games will be LIVE on SKY Sport.

“Kiwis love Rugby League and it’s really pleasing that SKY Sport is continuing to screen the Pirtek National Premiership," says Last, "as it allows viewers to follow up and coming players and catch grassroots league at its finest."

In another change from last year, the Canterbury Bulls will represent the Southern Zone in the competition. Players from throughout the South Island will be eligible for selection to the Bulls team, which will be coached by former Kiwi Mike Doreen.

Last year’s finalists – the Akarana Falcons and the Counties Manukau Stingrays – meet in the TV game on September 16 and Canterbury fans will first get to see coverage of the Bulls the following Monday (September 23) when they take on the Falcons.

Pirtek National Premiership –Monday Night Football (SKY Sport televised matches)

September 2 - Waicoa Bay Stallions vs Wellington Orcas - SKY Sport 1, 7.30pm
September 9 - Wellington Orcas vs Akarana Falcons – SKY Sport 2, 7.30pm
September 16 - Counties Manukau Stingrays vs Akarana Falcons – SKY Sport 2, 7.30pm
September 23 - Akarana Falcons vs Canterbury Bulls – SKY Sport 2, 7.30pm
September 30 - Central Vipers vs Waicoa Bay Stallions – SKY Sport 2, 7.30pm
October 7 - Northern Swords vs Wellington Orcas – SKY Sport 2, 7.30pm
October 14 - Canterbury Bulls vs Waicoa Bay Stallions – SKY Sport 2, 7.30pm
October 21 - 1st place qualifier vs 2nd place qualifier – SKY Sport 2, 7.30pm

The Pirtek National Premiership starts on Sunday, August 25, with TV coverage beginning the week after.

The full Pirtek National Premiership draw is here:

National Premiership finals (For the Albert Baskerville Trophy):

2012 - Akarana Falcons 38 v Counties Manukau Stingrays 20
2011 - Auckland Pride 44 v South Island Scorpions 34
2010 - Auckland 14 v Counties Manukau 6

Note: The seven zone teams in the Pirtek National Premiership are (from North to South) the Northern Swords, Akarana Falcons, Counties Manukau Stingrays, Waicoa Bay Stallions, Central Vipers, Wellington Orcas and the Canterbury Bulls (representing the Southern Zone). More details on the NZRL National Competition can be found here:

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