NRL 2020: Peter V'Landys claims competition 'could start tomorrow' after health official complaints

Australian Rugby League Commission (ARLC) chairman Peter V'Landys is adamant the NRL have been given official permission to resume next month, despite concerns from the  New South Wales health minister and the state's deputy chief medical officer.

On Thursday, the ARLC gave the green light for the NRL's return on May 28, with the final details on how the competition would run expected to be confirmed later this month.

But the following day, health minister Brad Hazzard said he had not been consulted on the league's plan to resume play, while medical officer Paul Kelly expressed concern over the risks of returning to action too soon.

But V'Landys told NewsCorp he has the correct paperwork to allow the competition to start next month. 

"I appreciate how busy the health minister and medical officers are," V'landys said. 

"They would not be aware that we have dealt with the relevant authorities and have the necessary authorisation.

"It's in the NSW public health order that we are exempt. We also received a letter last Wednesday from relevant government authority confirming we can train and play.

"This is the mistake everyone has made. It is seven weeks away. In that seven weeks there will be some form of relaxation of the social distancing measures.

"Rugby league, like it or not is a workplace. Other workplaces are continuing to operate. The risk now is minimal.

"There is more chance of you getting hit by a car walking across the road than there is of you getting the coronavirus if you are in an area that has 1 percent [infection rate].

"In reality, we could start tomorrow in NSW because we have permission to [do so]. We're not going to. That is why we decided to give it six or seven weeks."

Despite V'Landys' comments, Hazzard claimed he hadn't heard from the NRL or the ARLC for four or five weeks.

The NRL was quick to hit back, saying it had been liaising with the offices of the sports minister

"The NRL has been in constant contact with federal and state governments throughout the COVID-19 pandemic including this week, and will continue to work closely with government in the weeks ahead," an NRL spokesman told AAP. 

AAP claims Hazzard's office told the NRL to start liaising with the sports ministers when they last spoke. 

ARL commissioner Wayne Pearce also claimed on Thursday the state government was happy for players to train and play as long as public health guidelines were adhered to.

The NRL is desperate to return to action after V'Landys revealed last month the game is under massive financial pressure.