NSW Blues

The NSWRL Board has today agreed to a one-year contract extension to 2021 for Brydens Lawyers NSW Blues coach Brad Fittler, who last year became the first NSW coach since 2004-05 to win back-to-back State of Origin series.

Fittler is currently serving his third year as Blues coach after his initial two-year contract for the successful 2018 and 2019 series was extended by 12 months last year.

This second extension, ahead of the 2020 series to be played in November is a strong endorsement for Fittler, stretching his coaching tenure to four years.

It will make him one of the Blues’ top three longest serving coaches behind Phil Gould (24 games over eight years) and Laurie Daley (15 games over five years).

Fittler said: “I am really grateful for the NSWRL Board’s strong show of faith in me and our Origin and pathways program.

“It also means my coaching future won’t be a distraction throughout our preparation and defence of the Origin shield.

“I am really fortunate to have this job and it gives me great pride in seeing how much it unites the state.

“Given the year that the entire community has endured from droughts and bushfires to the COVID-19 pandemic, I can’t think of a better way to end the year and lift community spirits. I can’t wait for Origin.”

NSWRL Chief Executive David Trodden said: “Winning two from two series, the Board obviously could not be happier with the way things are going with Origin and they were very pleased to extend Brad’s contract when they met today. They have every confidence the run of success will continue this year.”