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‘I’ll take Cleary’s advice’: Moses admits he’s only minding NSW No.7

But residents of greater Sydney as well as the Blue Mountains, Central Coast, Wollongong and Shellharbour will be banned from buying tickets.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian confirmed on Wednesday she would extend the greater Sydney lockdown for a week, ruling out the potential for any crowd at Stadium Australia at Sydney Olympic Park, which has been listed as a COVID-19 hotspot.

NSW will chase an Origin clean sweep next week without playing a single match in Sydney.

NSW will chase an Origin clean sweep next week without playing a single match in Sydney.Credit:Getty

The Blues will now attempt a series whitewash in traditional rugby league heartland having spent the week in camp at Kingscliff on the far north coast of NSW.

The NRL had been considering taking the match to Melbourne or Canberra if the NSW government couldn’t guarantee a 75 per cent capacity at McDonald Jones Stadium, but were given the green light on Wednesday.

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NRL chief executive Andrew Abdo said it “ensures NSW will host a home game during the series” after the first two matches were played in Queensland.

“This is a reward for the people of Newcastle and [the] Hunter region,” Abdo said. “These fans are among the most passionate fans in our game. They turn out and support the Knights every week and we are excited to bring State of Origin to Newcastle.

“One of the positives to come from the pandemic has been the opportunity to give passionate rugby league communities like Newcastle and Townsville the chance to host Origin when they otherwise wouldn’t.”

The NRL is desperately trying to recoup lost revenue from the COVID outbreak, which has forced all NRL matches in Sydney to be played behind closed doors.

The first match of the series was switched from the Melbourne Cricket Ground to Townsville’s Queensland Country Bank Stadium because of a Victorian lockdown.

Meanwhile, the NRL was forced to move the Rabbitohs and Cowboys game to Newcastle after the Queensland government expressed concern with North Queensland playing in the Sydney Olympic Park precinct.

A week after the Roosters hosted Melbourne in the Hunter, the NRL on Wednesday announced plans for the round 17 match to shift away from Stadium Australia.

The venue will be at 50 per cent capacity and the Cowboys will charter a private plane to fly in and out of Newcastle.

“The NRL thanks the Rabbitohs for their assistance in relocating the game, ensuring the continuity of the competition,” the NRL said in a statement.

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