There are plenty of reasons to smile this week, as the sporting world is slowing getting back on its feet. Here are the major headlines and upcoming events in sport and racing.
AFL clubs back at training
The time has finally come for AFL clubs to resume training, albeit with extremely tight testing and restrictions in place.
Players are allowed to train in groups of no more than eight under the current restrictions, with full-contact training expected to return next week.
In good news for the South Australian clubs, the state government has backed down and granted both Adelaide and Port Adelaide the same exemptions that Western Australia awarded to Fremantle and West Coast.
That means the Crows and the Power can commence training in their home state and will not have to travel to their Gold Coast hub until much nearer the proposed June 11 restart.
The fixture for the next four rounds of the revamped 2020 AFL Premiership season is expected to come out by next week.
NRL 2020 season draw revealed
The NRL has released the complete draw for the restructured 2020 Telstra Premiership, which is set to recommence on Thursday, May 28.
There is plenty of talk surrounding the draw for the Sydney Roosters, who will have to play the Melbourne Storm, Brisbane Broncos, Canberra Raiders, South Sydney Rabbitohs and St George Illawarra Dragons twice as they chase a third consecutive flag.
The venues for the first nine rounds have been revealed, with teams only venturing to six different stadiums during this period: Bankwest Stadium, Campbelltown Stadium and Central Coast Stadium in NSW; Queensland Country Bank Stadium and Suncorp Stadium in Queensland; and AAMI Park in Victoria.
The bookies cannot split the Broncos and the Parramatta Eels for next Thursday’s season relaunch at Suncorp Stadium, as both sides are paying $1.90 at Sportsbet.
Cricket stars split over ICC rule recommendations
In an attempt to stop the transmission of illness on the field of play, the International Cricket Council (ICC) has recommended banning the use of saliva to shine the ball.
The decision has sparked a fair bit of discussion among cricketers and media figures, with Shane Warne declaring it a big win for batsmen everywhere.
While spit-shining is prohibited, the fielding team can still use sweat to polish the Kookaburra for their swing bowlers.
The ICC also suggested that home umpires should replace neutral officials for the time being, and that teams should have an extra DRS review per innings in all formats.
Eagle Farm and Flemington headline Saturday racing
While live sport is on the way back, thoroughbred racing is still the pick of the action on Australian soil this weekend.
Eagle Farm features a trio of Listed races, with the Group 2 Champagne Classic and Victory Stakes bookending the Group 3 Gunsynd Classic.
Down at Flemington, a quality field of 14 will assemble at 2:45pm AEST for the Listed Straight Six over 1200m.
There are also full cards at Randwick and Belmont, as well as regional racing at Newcastle, Murray Bridge and beyond.
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