Sharks and Dragons have something to play for

NRL : The list of NRL trials has now been released, with the Sharks and Dragons having something to play for before the season starts on Thursday March 12.Picture :John Veage
NRL : The list of NRL trials has now been released, with the Sharks and Dragons having something to play for before the season starts on Thursday March 12.Picture :John Veage

The full list of 2020 NRL trials has now been locked in, with premiers Sydney Roosters to face English Super League Champions St Helens in the 2020 World Club Challenge and several regional venues to once again host matches.

The return of the NRL Nines in Perth, the All-Stars game on the Gold Coast and the first trial featuring NRL teams in Papua New Guinea are other features on the schedule.

After the NRL Nines kick starts the NRL season in Perth the Dragons who recently teamed up with the Illawarra Hawks and Wollongong Wolves to help raise $75,000 at a combined golf day, will play Newcastle, February 22, 5.30 pm at Maitland in their first trail of the year.

The Dragons will then head to Mudgee on Saturday, February 29 with the Rabbitohs for the latest instalment in their time-honoured Charity Shield rivalry.

The Charity Shield which has been played 30 times has been regarded as the unofficial start to the National Rugby League (NRL) season and has been in operation since 1982, except for 2000 and 2001 when Souths were omitted from the NRL.

It will also be the third time Glen Willow Stadium has hosted the annual pre-season game as part of a four-year partnership between Mid-Western Regional Council, the Rabbitohs and the Dragons.

The Sharks whose NRL group were out and about at 35 local Sutherland Shire schools last week as a part of the Sharks School Blitz will then face off with the Bulldogs in a historic trial in Papua New Guinea on February 22.

The Port Moresby clash will be the first time two NRL clubs have played a trial in PNG-Brisbane having faced Intrust Super Cup side the PNG Hunters there previously.

The Sharks then head to their new home ground where they play their nemesis team Manly at Netstrata Jubilee Oval, Kogarah March 1 in their last hit-out before they face NRL premiership favourites the Rabbitohs at ANZ Stadium on March 14 at 5.30.