NRL 2020: NZ Warriors depart for Australia to resume season

The NZ Warriors are en route to Australia after departing Auckland Airport on Sunday afternoon. 

The Warriors are sending 31 players and at least 10 support staff to Australia where the team will likely be based until the season is complete in October. 

They are taking a charter flight to Tamworth  - over 400km north of Sydney - where the team will both isolate and train in build-up to the NRL's May 28 restart.

Players could be seen saying goodbye to their families, while airport security kept the travelling group away from the public. 

They were also taking appropriate safety measures by wearing face masks.

Warriors chief executive Cameron George only received confirmation on Saturday allowing the Penrose-based NRL side permission into Australia.

On Saturday, Warriors captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck said he can't wait to get back out on the field. 

"It's going to be a real challenge for us all being away from our families but we're committed to getting back on the field to represent our club and our fans as well as everyone who loves sport," he said. 

"We're thankful for all the work Cameron and the NRL have done to make it possible for us to get on with starting the season again."

The NRL season has been suspended since March due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Warriors were in the middle of their 2020 season opener against the Newcastle Knights on March 14 when New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden announced the country's borders were going to be shut. 

The Warriors opted to remain in Australia but returned home the following week when the competition was brought to a halt. 

Since the NRL announced plans to restart, the Warriors have been fighting desperately to get the correct paperwork to ensure they could take part when the competition resumes later this month.