NRL pays tribute to emergency service volunteers
NRL CEO Dave Smith has paid tribute to New South Wales' Emergency Service for their role in the recent storms which wreaked havoc across the state by providing 2000 tickets to Origin I on May 27.
The volunteers will also take the field so they can be properly thanked by both those in attendance and the millions watching at home.
Smith said it's the NRL's way of showing their gratitude towards those who risked their own lives in order to save others, at a presentation at Rugby League Central on Monday afternoon.
"In consolation with the Premier and the New South Wales government the NRL would like to pay tribute to those who put their lives on the line time and time again, particularly last week," Smith said.
"[While the volunteers are on the field before Game One] we'll also show a video of the dangerous and sometimes treacherous work in some cases, that these folk do on our behalf.
"I think everybody more or less was affected. Like me, you may have been stuck in an airport for a few hours and got away very lightly or you were protecting your property, some of which was significantly damaged and of course some people tragically lost their lives and our thoughts go out to their loved ones.
"But it's the emergency services workers who are the common denominator here, who selflessly risked their lives to help out others when most needed."
New South Wales Premier Mike Baird was on hand at Rugby League Central and thanked the NRL for their "kind tribute and acknowledgement of the work done by our emergency service workers".
"It is a reminder of what a great state we are a part of. Our emergency services workers do an incredible job and for the NRL to recognise their faith through the offering of these tickets and we'll make sure they're distributed across all of these emergency services who were on the front line last week," Baird said.
"The acknowledgement of the crowd and the reflecting effectively of our state to recognise a job well done is something which should be done more often.
"The NRL, in making this come together and provide this opportunity, is really welcomed by the government and will mean a lot to the emergency service workers."