Robbie Farah never played at Adelaide Oval but after watching State of Origin there as a fan last year, the Blues great can't wait to be among a full house at the iconic venue in 2023.
In conjunction with the South Australian Government, the NRL on Tuesday announced that Adelaide Oval would host a match in the 2023 series after the success of the first Origin at the stadium last year.
It continues the policy of one neutral venue and one home venue for each of the states in the three-match Ampol State of Origin series.
Farah, a 16-time NSW hooker, was present at November's series-opening clash in Adelaide in which Queensland claimed an 18-14 upset win en route to a famous 2-1 series victory.
A COVID-capacity crowd of 25,218 was recorded and Farah hopes that next time more than 50,000 are able to attend.
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"It's such an iconic ground. I was there for the Origin last year as a spectator and I thought it was a great week, a great event," Farah said.
"I was there for a few days in the build-up and there was quite a buzz around town. I've been there for many cricket Test matches as well, so there's a lot of history in the place.
"It's a good announcement [to have Origin returning to Adelaide Oval in 2023] for our game and for the sport down here in Adelaide. Hopefully, we can continue to make ourselves felt down here and gain some sort of presence in what is predominantly an AFL state.
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"I think it's great news for our game and the long-term vision of us trying to become national."
Farah believes the half-empty stadium due to COVID-19 regulations, combined with the unfamiliar end-of-season date, would have made it "quite difficult" for the players in last year's Adelaide fixture.
"It was a great spectacle, but I'm looking forward to coming back in a couple of years for, hopefully, what will be a more traditional State of Origin in the middle of our season in May or June, when Origins are generally played, in front of a sold-out crowd," he said.
The Wests Tigers legend felt the excitement from the locals in the City of Churches in the lead-up to the match.
"A lot of them are foreign to it and it would've been their first experience at a game, but they were all looking forward to it," he said.
ARL Commissioner Peter Beattie said at Tuesday's launch: "We want to build on what we started last year.
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"The Adelaide Oval match was a great success. We had a capacity COVID crowd and the way the city embraced the Origin series gives us every confidence of filling the venue in 2023.
"State of Origin is the most successful sporting brand in Australia which we now play in the five biggest capital cities in Australia."
"I want to thank Premier Steven Marshall for his support, he has been the strongest of advocates for securing this event. State of Origin will fill hotels and restaurants across Adelaide and inject millions into the local economy."
The Premier said the Origin game would inject an estimated $15 million into the local economy.
"It’s a great result for rugby league fans, but also a big win for South Australian hotels, restaurants and cafes," he said.
"More than 20,000 interstate visitors are expected to visit Adelaide to help celebrate the big match - injecting an estimated $15 million dollars into the South Australian economy.
"Last year’s NRL State of Origin game was a real hit and delivered a cracking game in front of more than 25,000 fans – including 4000 from interstate."
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Incoming Maroons coach Paul Green said, "from all reports, our players and fans really enjoyed last year’s Origin experience in Adelaide.
"It was obviously a great night for our supporters and the players and coaches who played their part in a memorable win.
"It’s always exciting to showcase State of Origin in new markets and at iconic sporting venues like the Adelaide Oval, so I’m sure there will be a lot of people looking forward to this game in 2023."
Blues coach Brad Fittler said a packed Adelaide Oval would be an ideal place to stage an Origin encounter.
"We enjoyed running out in the iconic stadium last year, albeit with a small crowd due to the challenges and restrictions as a result of COVID-19, so we would love to see Adelaide Oval filled with our current fans and new fans proudly wearing the blue wig next time," he said.
"The people of Adelaide love their sport and an Origin match is a great way to showcase our game."