Two NRL weeks max in Gladstone: Cook

South Sydney NRL hooker Damien Cook has opened up on some of the logistical difficulties he is facing due to the coronavirus outbreak.

DAMIEN COOK of the Rabbitohs in action during the NRL match between the South Sydney Rabbitohs and the Canberra Raiders at Central Coast Stadium in Gosford, Australia.
DAMIEN COOK of the Rabbitohs in action during the NRL match between the South Sydney Rabbitohs and the Canberra Raiders at Central Coast Stadium in Gosford, Australia. Picture: Ashley Feder/Getty Images

South Sydney star Damien Cook admits he may only consider two weeks away from his family should the NRL self-isolate in Gladstone.

Cook on Monday spoke about the logistical difficulties clubs and players are facing due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Already the Kangaroos hooker was forced to alter water baptism celebrations for first child Willow Joy on Sunday because of the limitations on indoor gatherings.

"We had a lot more people when we first booked in the date to come to church and back to our place, actually to a pub," Cook said on Monday.

"But that got cancelled and ended up being a small little function just with the family at home.

"But it was good to still get it on though."

Cook, 28, has also had initial discussions with his partner, Courtney, over the possibility of the league relocating players in a desperate bid to keep the game alive.

The small Queensland town of Calliope, located in the Gladstone region, has been widely tipped as the likely destination to host all 16 teams.

And while Cook concedes his extended family could travel up from Helensburgh on the NSW south coast to help, he would prefer it would be for a short period.

"Courtney understands that the best thing for the game too is to continue to play. She's fully supportive of us if we have to move away," Cook said.

"I just would like to hope that it wouldn't be for too long.

"Just maybe a couple of weeks' max to put all the players in isolation and get a couple of games in and then hopefully get back to our families for a little bit."

And while states go into lockdown on Monday, Cook reasoned that there was more to the NRL pushing on that players continuing to be paid.

"It's not just for us to keep playing footy," he said.

"It's for all the fans out there and the admin within the clubs gives them jobs as well.

"And it gives something for the fans to look forward to each weekend, because at the moment they're all in lockdown and probably going stir-crazy at home."


AAP