NEWCASTLE Rugby League semi-finals will now be elimination encounters for all top-four sides next month.
The decision to reduce the play-offs by one week overall and make it a 1v4, 2v3 format on October 10-11 was made at a board meeting on Tuesday night.
Newcastle RL postponed fixtures last weekend out of respect for Central's Joel Dark, who died five days after collapsing on the field during his first grade debut on September 6.
Competition resumes this Saturday with delayed round nine games.
Rounds 10 and 11 will get played seven days later than originally scheduled, which means the regular season ends on the October long weekend.
Newcastle RL have opted to change the finals series, initially set down for three weeks with major (1v2), minor (3v4) and preliminary semis.
Moving the 2020 decider back any further than October 18 would have caused a clash with the NRL showpiece on the last Sunday of the month.
Newcastle RL have yet to finalise a grand final venue but Maitland Sportsground is still being considered with McDonald Jones Stadium, No.1 and No.2 sportsgrounds already ruled out.
* DAVE Wild will finish up at the end of next week after five years as the Newcastle Hunter Community Rugby League competitions manager.
Wild has not yet been replaced but Central Coast's Leanne Hayne is set to oversee the upcoming finals series.
He managed a brief on-field cameo alongside son Harvey at Waratah on the weekend.
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