V'landys halts NRL 'scrap points' plan

St George Illawarra are one of six teams to have lost their two games before the NRL shutdown.
St George Illawarra are one of six teams to have lost their two games before the NRL shutdown.

Facing a backlash from angry NRL clubs and fans, ARL Commission chairman Peter V'landys has stepped in to abort a plan to start the 2020 competition from scratch when it resumes.

Wayne Pearce's innovations committee was initially set to consider scrapping the first two rounds and adopting a new conference format when they next meet on Thursday.

However, Pearce - who heads the committee dubbed Project Apollo - was forced to backtrack barely 24 hours after pitching the idea following a conversation with V'landys on Tuesday morning.

"My personal view is when we get the competition up and running again we should carry the results from the opening two rounds," Pearce told Fox Sports.

"Players have worked extremely hard all off-season and clubs have lost players to injuries in those opening two games.

"However the competition is structured, we should still carry the points that have been accrued."

It was a dramatic about-face from Pearce, who on Monday had revealed to reporters the bold plan to scrap points.

He initially said the committee would consider ditching points because of concerns about the opening two rounds' impact on the integrity of the competition which may return in a two-conference format.

"We will probably be determining whether or not we use the competition points from the start of the year," Pearce told News Corp.

"Some people would say that (keeping points) would take away the integrity of the competition if you are going to have a different competition structure."

The idea of scrapping points earned the ire of the six undefeated clubs and their fans.

It also raised eyebrows considering Trent Robinson - coach of the win-less Sydney Roosters - is a member of the eight-strong innovation committee.

However, V'landys confirmed he had ensured the idea was dead in the water.

"I spoke with Wayne Pearce this morning and we both agreed that it's not going to come under consideration," V'landys told News Corp.

"The commission has not considered it and it won't be considering it."

Brisbane CEO Paul White welcomed the news after facing the prospect of having the Broncos' perfect 2-0 start wiped away.

"They are the kind of wins that you can build a season around, and I know our whole club ... have been buoyed by those results across the uncertain weeks in the wake of the season being suspended," he said on the Broncos website.

The committee is still set to discuss a two-conference system with teams isolated in two 'bubbles', in NSW and Queensland, for a 14-week regular season.

One conference would include eight Sydney-based teams, while the remaining sides - believed to include St George Illawarra and Newcastle - would be quarantined in the sunshine state.

Each team would face each other twice before a four-week finals series, taking the entire season to 18 weeks - not including State of Origin.

Australian Associated Press