THE long-neglected NSW Cup is set to receive a welcome profile boost in 2013, with weekly matches to be televised live as NRL curtain-raisers.
The Daily Telegraph has learned negotiations between the NSWRL and Fox Sports are well advanced to broadcast a selected match every round, which would herald the return of the traditional three-match program. The preferred timeslot for live broadcasts is 1.30pm on Saturday, before NYC and NRL fixtures at the same venue. The deal goes some way toward restoring the prestige of the senior feeder competition, which has languished in suburban and provincial ovals since the NYC's birth in 2008. But there could be further progress for the
NSW Cup beyond next year, with former NZRL boss Jim Doyle yesterday appointed to conduct a review of all feeder competitions. NRL club bosses have already made their preference for open-age football clear, believing it should replace under-20s matches as the established curtain-raiser.
The NSWRL has also confirmed the third-tier Bundaberg Cup will be re-named the Ron Massey Cup in response to the rum giant quitting its sponsorship at the end of this year.