Home / World News / Dogs eye long-term Olympic Park stability

Dogs eye long-term Olympic Park stability

Canterbury have set their sights on being able to turn Accor Stadium into a blue-and-white jungle again with the real possibility they will be left as the venue’s only major full-time tenant.

The Bulldogs are eying an end to years of mass movement across multiple venues, forced by COVID-19 and confusion over stadium rebuilds and upgrades.

In this year alone they will host five games at Accor Stadium at Sydney Olympic Park, four at CommBank in Parramatta, one at their traditional home of Belmore and two in Queensland.

But that is expected to be simplified in coming years, with Accor no longer being knocked down and rebuilt.

Canterbury intend on playing either eight or nine games at the Olympic venue in a move away from Parramatta, given its closer links to their geographical heartland.

One or two would still be played at Belmore, while two would remain interstate with Bundaberg locked in for this year and next and the Bulldogs a regular host at Magic Round.

Under that strategy, the club would largely save the 83,500-seat Accor Stadium from becoming a complete white elephant.

As recently as 2017, 35 regular-season games were played at the Olympic Stadium with the Bulldogs, South Sydney, Wests Tigers, Parramatta and St George Illawarra all calling it home.

Super Rugby and AFL also played around three games a year there until 2015, while it was the Sydney Thunder’s BBL base until 2014-15.

Come next year, Canterbury could be the only club left outside of State of Origin and finals as South Sydney seriously weigh up a move back to Moore Park.

And the Bulldogs can see an upside, after being the ground’s only major rugby league team in its early days.

“We would be a major tenant,” Bulldogs CEO Aaron Warburton told AAP.

“We would have a lot more flexibility in terms of making sure it is a blue-and-white jungle rather than a makeshift venue.

“It would be a lot less of a logistical nightmare, because we wouldn’t have to bump-in, bump-out so much except for when they have concerts.

“But that wouldn’t be the case much during the week-in, week-out during the NRL.”

The allocation of Belmore games will also remain crucial under the plan.

Sunday’s clash with St George Illawarra is the first time since 2015 Canterbury have hosted a fellow Sydney club there, and just the second time since they left the ground in 1998.

The Bulldogs would still prefer to see an upgrade of the suburban ground to play more than one game there each year, but regardless Warburton envisages them as being against Sydney clubs.

“We don’t want to bring games here that generally don’t attract. We want to put on a show,” he said.

“We want to create a bit of a supply-and-demand problem.

“We want to sell out. We want this one to be a memorable one, not just a run-of-the-mill playing whoever.”

About brandsauthority

Check Also

Newcrest Mining reportedly in buyout talks with North American company

A major global gold producer is believed to be eyeing Newcrest Mining, which has reportedly …

%d bloggers like this: