Landmark international rights deal with Fox Sports

The National Rugby League has entered into a partnership with Fox Sports Australia to take the NRL to a global audience via a direct to consumer international streaming product, to be known as Watch NRL.

Rugby League fans living abroad* will be able to follow all the on-field action live throughout the 2018 NRL Telstra Premiership season as a result of the new partnership offering.

The new international streaming service will be available for round one of the 2018 NRL Telstra Premiership Season.

Fans will also able to view the Holden State of Origin Series, Australian men's and women's international matches played on home soil and Intrust Super Cup matches.

NRL Chief Executive Todd Greenberg said the partnership would provide thousands of rugby league fans living or travelling overseas with the opportunity to keep up with their teams' results every week, as well as being able to tune in to watch many other live marquee matches throughout the year.

"This is a fantastic result for fans outside of Australia and it means that more people will have the chance to watch rugby league live than ever before," Mr Greenberg said.

"We're fortunate that we have passionate and enthusiastic NRL fans right throughout the world and many of them are just as vocal and committed as our local fans that live where each of our teams are based."

NRL Head of Strategy David Silverton added: "We are delighted to be partnering with Fox Sports on this initiative, which is simply about providing the opportunity for more fans to watch the highest quality rugby league anywhere in the world.

"We thank Patrick Delany and his team at Fox Sports for bringing this initiative to life with us and we look forward to increasing world-wide viewership next season and beyond."

Fox Sports CEO, Patrick Delany, said: "When we negotiated the new NRL broadcast deal in 2015, News Corp committed to helping grow the game in Australia and overseas.

"In 2018, that promise comes to life when Fox Sports delivers the world's first international NRL streaming service to feature every NRL game plus Fox League's famous entertainment shows – anywhere, anytime live and on demand."

Users who log on to Watch NRL will be able to choose the way they watch – either from a dedicated website, the Watch NRL mobile or tablet App for iOS or Android or via their TV screens using Airplay or Chromecast.

Fox Sports have partnered with International Management Group (IMG) to promote the international NRL broadcast rights over the next five years, with FOX SPORTS managing the broadcast rights for the USA and the UK.

For more information on Watch NRL, including when the streaming service will be available, head to www.watchnrl.com.

* Watch NRL content will only be accessible outside of Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Territories.

This article first appeared on nrl.com