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The PNG Hunters have made a flying start to their Intrust Super Cup admission and face the also undefeated Northern Pride on Saturday. Copyright: SMP Images/QRL Media

Digicel Play has announced a partnership with the National Broadcasting Corporation which will see a number of NRL games also aired on the NBC's free-to-air channel in Papua New Guinea.

During the 2016 season, three weekly NRL matches will be aired on NBC as well as Digicel Play. The partnership will also see the ANZAC Test and the very popular State of Origin series aired on both networks.

All remaining matches, including the PNG Hunters games and Digicel Cup, will be aired on Digicel Play.

Digicel CEO, Mr Maurice McCarthy, said Digicel recognises that Rugby League and the NRL has a passionate following in PNG.

"We want to work closely with PNG's state broadcaster to allow both our viewers and NBC viewers the chance to see the action at home," he said.

"As the true home of Rugby League in PNG, Digicel Play offers an unbeatable service for our viewers. With Digicel Play and NBC we are reaching the whole of PNG."

"PNG is going to experience NRL like they have never experienced it before and our partnership with NBC means key games will be free-to-air on NBC, as well as broadcast in high definition on Digicel Play," Mr McCarthy said.         

Acting Managing Director of NBC, Mr Kora Nou, said the availability of the NRL in every home in PNG with a TV set, meant that the partnership was a win-win arrangement for both the NBC and Digicel Play.

"We recognize that Rugby League is the national sport of PNG, and the NRL is the best club competition in the world. Through this partnership, there will be 100 percent NRL coverage across the country. Working together with Digicel means that the people of PNG can enjoy the NRL on whichever platform they choose.

"As the State Broadcaster, one of our core functions is to provide real entertainment; when it comes to Rugby League, the NRL is as compelling as it gets," he said.

Since its launch in 2008, NBC TV has established itself as the platform for the National Government to provide information services and PNG content through news, current affairs, and supporting local communities.

"We are extremely happy that through this partnership we can now also broadcast NRL content to our viewers," Mr Nou added. 

The announcement is a major boost for PNG rugby league fans and is another step in Digicel's full program of activity which goes far beyond just televising the matches.

A dedicated NRL page on LOOP PNG will provide game and coverage details and up to date NRL news throughout each day.

TVWAN will also air the popular TV show FanZone, and is launching a new program called 'Rugby Review' which will feature post game commentary by professional players. 

Digicel announced last year that from 2016 Digicel Play will not only broadcast the Digicel Cup and the QRL Intrust Super Cup, but also the NRL Premiership League, The State of Origin Series, The All Stars Match, the ANZAC test and the under 20's games.

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