It’s that exciting time of year again! The annual State of Origin series – the high point of Rugby League season in Australia – is starting today, with the first match between the NSW Blues and the Queensland Maroons to be played out at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
2018 marks the 37th anniversary of the iconic state vs state rivalry, and this season promises to be an exciting and hard-fought battle.
State of Origin 2018 schedule
With three games to look forward to, these are the dates you’ll need to mark on your calendar if you want to shout yourself hoarse cheering on your favourite team. All three matches begin at 8pm AEST.
- Game 1: Wednesday, June 6 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground
- Game 2: Sunday, June 24 at ANZ Stadium in Sydney
- Game 3: Wednesday, July 11 at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane
Kick-off is at 8pm AEST for all three matches, but if you’re watching on the telly, you’ll be able to keep up up with pre-game commentary on Channel 9 from 7pm.
How to watch State of Origin 2018 on free-to-air TV
As always, the Nine Network has the broadcast rights to the State of Origin, with the matches shown live and free on Channel Nine. If you’re keen on catching all the action in glorious high-def, then 9HD is where you should be watching the games. That’s channel 90 on your digital TV.
How to watch State of Origin 2018 online
Where previously you could purchase a $4 NRL Live Pass from Telstra and watch the Origin games on your phone, that’s not the case this year. While the Live Pass is still available, it sadly excludes live streaming of the 2018 State of Origin games.
However, the Nine Network’s free 9Now web platform will provide a live stream of all three games. There will be five separate streams available that viewers can swap between, including the spider cam and player cameras, alongside the main coverage.
If you have a Foxtel connection, you should note that Fox Sports isn’t broadcasting Origin live. There is, however, a WatchNRL web platform that Foxtel has set up which, after purchasing a subscription, will let you watch the live stream. That State of Origin Pass will set you back $50.
- Travelling overseas during Origin season? You’ll need a VPN to watch the games, then, and we’ve figured out which are the best VPN services in 2018.