Women's Super League: Leeds Rhinos go into Grand Final play-offs as Featherstone Rovers and Wakefield Trinity battle for Shield
Leeds Rhinos and Castleford Tigers will begin their quest for another Women’s Super League Grand Final appearance when the competition resumes next month.
The league will be split into two five-team divisions from Sunday, August 8. The original plan was for a top-four, bottom-six split.
Rhinos and Tigers are in the top-tier, alongside St Helens, Wigan Warriors and York City Knights.
Featherstone Rovers Wakefield Trinity Huddersfield Giants, Warrington Wolves and Bradford Bulls will compete for the Super League Shield. Both finals will be staged at Rhinos’ Emerald Headingley Stadium on Sunday, October 10.
This weekend’s final round of regular-season matches - including Leeds’ showdown with Challenge Cup winners St Helens at Odsal in Bradford - has been cancelled.
The RFL say clubs unanimously agreed to an immediate ‘circuit-break’ from problems caused by positive Covid-19 tests, self-isolations and injuries. Several recent fixtures have been called off because clubs were unable to raise a team.
Fixtures have yet to be announced, but the RFL say England training sessions and reserve weekends for any postponements will be accommodated within the new schedule.
RFL director of participation and development Marc Lovering said: “It has been wonderful to have women’s rugby league back in 2021 after losing virtually the entire season last year, but the wider public health situation continues to challenge all of us.
“At times like this we have to be agile and I’m grateful to all the clubs for recognising the challenges and being flexible enough to adapt.
“They have shown admirable commitment throughout the season under enormous pressures at times.
He added: “We all recognise it was becoming increasingly difficult to reschedule postponed games, to guarantee the strongest-possible squads reaching the finals at Headingley and to give England the best possible chance in the World Cup.
“This decision puts us in a much better place.”
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