Following the decision by the club not to travel to Toulouse for our fixture on the 17th April, and the subsequent press release by the RFL stating that Toulouse will be awarded the game 24-0, the club would like to make the following statement.
The club have taken the difficult decision of not making the trip to France for the game on the 17th of April on the basis that we feel that we are not being treated the same as the other clubs in the Championship who are not required to travel to France in the current climate. The club did offer to reverse the fixture with Toulouse which would have resulted in us giving up the gate receipts from the home game in August.
Chairman David Hughes commented “The RFL made the decision that our club should travel to France on the basis of being full-time and that our competitors who are playing for the same prize of promotion to Super League for the 2022 season do not have to travel due to being part-time. We feel this doesn’t create a level playing field within our competition and brings into question of the integrity of the competition if we are having to adhere to different criteria. At a meeting held In early March we made our feelings known about what was being asked of us which was supported by other clubs in the competition yet the RFL still insisted on us traveling.”
He added “We fully appreciate that the quarantine rules the Government have set out will impact part-time players on return as they have employment outside of Rugby League but feel that shouldn’t be a barrier to them travelling to France if this is planned with their employers in advance of the game. Whilst our players and staff are full-time the quarantine will still have an effect on their personal lives in different ways to part-time players. Under the current Government guidelines, anyone returning from France needs to self-isolate for 10 days but can release after 5 days following a negative PCR test so this would mean part time players would only need to request 4 days off from the employer in the 2021 season which we don’t think would be an unreasonable request.”
The club or any one from the club will not be making any further comment on the matter at the current time.