Queensland has thwarted a bid by New South Wales to steal the NRL’s Magic Round.
The state government has confirmed it is set to sign a new deal with the NRL to keep the event in Brisbane for another two years.
It comes after the New South Wales government signalled its intention to bid for Magic Round, with a view to holding it at the new Sydney Football Stadium.
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“I have one message for the Premier of New South Wales. Hands off our magic round. The sharks were circling in Sydney, but today I can confirm the winner is Queensland,” Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk told state parliament.
The announcement comes ahead of this year’s Magic Round which kicks off tomorrow night at Suncorp Stadium.
More than 69,000 fans are expected to turn out at Suncorp Stadium over the three days with Saturday already a sell-out.
“We play an important role in developing the format and we’ve seen strong crowds here since its inception in 2019,” the Premier said.
“In total, this deal will inject more than $22.5 million per year into local businesses helping to rebuild our tourism industry and our economy, which was hit hard during the pandemic.”
Tourism operators in Brisbane are set for a bumper weekend with hotel occupancy at 88 per cent.