Crowd numbers and COVID-19 safety protocols were the "key factors" in Newcastle Rugby League opting to host their 2020 finals series at Maitland Sportsground.
Newcastle RL chief executive officer Matt Harris, who held a meeting with clubs on Wednesday night, said the venue ticked the right boxes after McDonald Jones Stadium, No.2 Sportsground and No.1 Sportsground were ruled out.
Elimination semis in all four grades are scheduled for October 10 and 11 with deciders set down for the following Sunday (October 18).
Up to 2500 people will be able to attend each event at any one time. This was allowed at the statewide President's Cup semi-final on September 19.
"We're taking the finals series to Maitland Sportsground this year," Harris told the Newcastle Herald.
"One of the key factors is that we can have 2500 people there. That process was made easier because approval [venue classification] had already happened.
"From a COVID-19 safety end it also ticks the right boxes, especially with seating."
Harris said McDonald Jones Stadium, which has housed Newcastle RL grand finals since 2015, wasn't a cost effective option this year.
No.2 Sportsground is booked out and No.1 Sportsground, where deciders were previously played, is undergoing upgrades.
The Pickers won't feature in play-offs for men's tier one or two divisions, but can still qualify for under 19s and women's Blues Tag depending on results from this weekend's last round.
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