ULTIMATE PRIZE: Cowboys co-captains Johnathan Thurston and Matt Scott lift the Provan-Summons Trophy for winning last year's NRL grand final.
ULTIMATE PRIZE: Cowboys co-captains Johnathan Thurston and Matt Scott lift the Provan-Summons Trophy for winning last year's NRL grand final. DEAN LEWINS

NRL denies being a cheapskate to premiers

THE NRL has hit back at claims it doesn't offer enough prizemoney for teams in the finals series.

As the debate continues surrounding the meagre $100,000 award for the minor premiership, the NRL moved to debunk claims that the only additional prizemoney on offer was the $400,000 given to the premiers.

"Up to $2.5 million in prizemoney and incentives will be up for grabs in the NRL finals series, which begins next week,” it said in a statement.

"This includes $1 million in prizemoney, rising from $20,000 for a first-week finals loser through to $400,000 for the grand final winner.”

Along with the $20,000 given to the first two teams eliminated, $30,000 is given to those outed in the second week, $100,000 in the third week and $200,000 to the grand final losers.

In comparison, the AFL offers $71,000, $110,000 and $330,000 respectively for first, second and third-week losers, before $660,000 is given to the runners-up and $1.2 million to the premiers.

No minor premiership prizemoney is awarded by the AFL.

The NRL also said a pool of $1.5 million was available to clubs in corporate hospitality and cash incentives for reaching gate and attendance targets throughout the finals.

The NRL's insistence comes after Melbourne co-owner Matthew Tripp labelled the $100,000 prize to the minor premiers as embarrassing on Wednesday, before Saturday's night's deciding clash between the Storm and Cronulla.

Prizemoney

NRL

Premiers $400,000

Runners-up $200,000

Week 3 losers $100,000

Week 2 losers $30,000

Week 1 losers $20,000

Minor premiers $100,000

AFL

Premiers $1.2 million

Runners-up $660,000

Week 3 losers $330,000

Week 2 losers $110,000

Week 1 losers $71,000

Minor premiers $0


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