The Warriors still hope to leave for Australia this Sunday, despite the ongoing uncertainty over the proposed NRL restart on May 28.
The Herald understands the club has booked a departure on Sunday afternoon — on a chartered Air New Zealand flight — although there are still some concerns over the lack of concrete answers and information from the NRL.
As reported by the Herald on Wednesday, one of the main issues was the players' remuneration, as the club wasn't prepared to relocate the squad for potentially five months, without knowing what their full employment conditions would be.
The Warriors' squad has since been provided with a baseline figure, along with the rest of the teams in the competition.
However negotiations are ongoing, between the Rugby League Players Association and the NRL, after the Sydney Morning Herald reported on Thursday that the players might have to take a 50 per cent pay cut for the final five months of the season (June to October) due to the expected drop in broadcast revenue.
The players in other teams have sided in solidarity with the Warriors, saying they won't begin training on May 4 (as per the NRL guidelines) until the salaries are finalised for all clubs.
But outside that issue, the Warriors are still waiting for some other answers.
The Herald understands that;
• The club is still yet to receive any form of written confirmation from the Australia Border Force Commission that they will be granted an exemption to enter New South Wales. An application has been made for 41 players and staff to cross the Tasman. The NRL has told the Warriors this approval should be confirmed at some stage on Friday, despite the Australian Rugby League Commission making the announcement to media on Tuesday night that the exemption was approved.
• The Warriors are also waiting on their approval to be able to train while in the 14-day quarantine period after they arrive in Australia.
• It's believed the RLPA has also mooted that players from clubs that need to relocate (the Warriors, as well as potentially the three Queensland teams and the Melbourne Storm) should be given five days notice, which would mean a departure in the middle of next week. That detail has yet to be confirmed.
Everything will hinge on the ongoing negotiations between the RLPA and the NRL over salary levels, which aren't expected to conclude until Friday morning at the earliest.
However, Warriors chief executive Cameron George is remaining optimistic. He said the club had sent gear to Australia on Thursday, and were still working towards a weekend departure.
"There are a lot of things to work out but hopefully we'll get there," said George.
"Everyone is working really hard behind the scenes and we have to be positive. We are waiting on a few more answers and hopefully they will come soon, but it's hard to predict."
The NRL announced on Tuesday they would run a 20-round competition in 2020, with an 18-week season to commence on May 28, after the earlier suspension following round two in mid-March due to the Covid-19 outbreak.