Featherstone seek talks to replace Toronto Wolfpack in 2021 Super League

Last Updated: 03/08/20 9:00pm

Featherstone Rovers missed out on promotion after losing to Toronto last year

Championship side Featherstone are seeking formal talks aimed at securing a place in Super League for 2021.

Rovers, who missed out on promotion to the top flight after losing to Toronto in last year’s play-off final, want to take the place of the Canadian side.

Wolfpack withdrew from the 2020 competition during the coronavirus stoppage after hitting major financial difficulties.

Featherstone offered to take their place immediately while London Broncos, who were relegated last year, were also suggested as a potential alternative to keep the competition at 12 teams.

A decision was made for Super League to continue with 11 teams, with Toronto’s results being expunged from the league table, but the situation for 2021 is yet to be determined.

Toronto are hoping to return but would need approval.

Super League chief executive Robert Elstone says he was surprised, but prepared for Toronto Wolfpack’s withdrawal from the competition

Super League chief executive Robert Elstone says he was surprised, but prepared for Toronto Wolfpack’s withdrawal from the competition

With no automatic promotion or relegation due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Featherstone believe they can make a strong case to replace them.

A statement from the club read: “Featherstone Rovers are seeking formal discussions with Super League officials and the RFL (Rugby Football League) to be permitted to play in the Betfred Super League in 2021.

“Featherstone Rovers believe that the club is best positioned to fulfil any vacant positions within Super League due to the impressive infrastructure that has been developed at the club over previous seasons.”

Chief executive Davide Longo added: “Our performances on the field are consistently high, the club’s facilities meet the regulations imposed by Super League and we have a strong following of passionate supporters who engage with the club’s fantastic off-field operation.

“Featherstone Rovers has arguably been one of the best and most consistent teams outside of Super League for the past 10 years.

“This shouldn’t be overlooked and cannot be challenged by any other club below the elite division. With the possible opportunity to play in the 2021 Super League, I am certain this great and traditional rugby league club would thrive at the highest level.”

Toronto suffered administrative problems that were exacerbated by the pandemic.

Super League confirmed the club’s participation agreement – the terms clubs must meet to play in the competition – has been terminated, reflecting “the seriousness of the breach of contract” by the club.

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