TICKETS will go on sale within days for Bathurst’s next NRL fixture, but the star attraction has still yet to resign with his club.
Melbourne Storm captain Cameron Smith, a future Immortal who is on track to become the first player to rack up 400 NRL games, has been on extended leave and is yet to finalise a new deal with the club.
The Storm say there is no doubt, however, that Smith will be playing with the club again next year and the sticking point is reported to be whether the deal is for one year or two years.
The Penrith Panthers will play the Storm at Carrington Park on Saturday, March 30 at 7.35pm in the sixth game of the Panthers’ long-term deal to bring an NRL match a year to Bathurst.
Bathurst Regional Council says tickets for the match will go on sale this Wednesday, December 12.
Asked if the interest in next year’s game had been strong because of the high profile of the Panthers’ opponents, mayor Graeme Hanger said it was hard to gauge until tickets went on sale.
“The event builds on our city’s strong reputation as a destination for major sporting events and council has played a key role in investing in the sporting facilities to ensure they attract premium events such as the NRL,” he said.
The Panthers played the Cronulla Sharks, the Gold Coast Titans and the Canberra Raiders twice over the first four years of their Bathurst deal.
The Panthers’ 2018 match at Carrington Park was against the North Queensland Cowboys in early May, which attracted a record crowd of 10,287.
Bathurst’s only other NRL game in March, the match against the Titans in the second year of the deal, drew a small crowd of around 6200.