The Kingstone Press Championship clubs have elected to stick with a ‘traditional’ play-off system when the top eight clubs at the end of the regular season step up the race for the 2013 title.
The play-offs kick-off over the weekend of September 5-8 and climax with the Kingstone Press Championship Grand Final on Sunday September 29.
At a meeting at Leigh Sports Village this week, the clubs agreed to a formula which will see the play-offs work as follows:
1st-placed club v 4th-placed club (winner advances to Week 3, loser home in Week 2)
2nd-placed club v 3rd-placed club (winner advances to Week 3, loser home in Week 2)
5th-placed club v 8th-placed club (winner away in Week 2, loser eliminated)
6th-placed club v 7th-placed club (winner away in Week 2, loser eliminated)
Highest ranked Qualifying play-off losing club (1st, 2nd, 3rdor 4th) v Lowest-ranked Elimination play-off winning club (5th, 6th, 7thor 8th) (winner away in Week 3, loser eliminated)
Lowest ranked Qualifying play-off losing club (1st, 2nd, 3rdor 4th) v Highest-ranked Elimination play-off winning club (5th, 6th, 7thor 8th) (winner away in Week 3, loser eliminated)
Qualifying semi-final 1
Highest-ranked Qualifying play-off winning club v Lowest-ranked Preliminary semi-final winning club (Winner to Grand Final, loser eliminated)
Qualifying semi-final 2
Lowest-ranked Qualifying play-off winning club v Highest-ranked Preliminary semi-final winning club (Winner to Grand Final, loser eliminated)
Kingstone Press Championship Grand Final
Winner Qualifying semi-final 1 v Winner Qualifying semi-final 2
RFL Chief Operating Officer Ralph Rimmer said: “The Championships clubs had a full debate on all aspects of their competitions and calendar.
“It was a very productive day which considered many issues, including that of the introduction of a ‘ClubCall’ system to the play-offs.
“Ultimately, whilst the consensus was that “ClubCall” has worked well in Super League, the clubs were keen for the newly-expanded Championships to develop its own feel and sense of identity.
“This was a theme which resonated throughout the day . The clubs developed several ideas which really demonstrated their sense of pride in their competitions and season: 2013 should benefit from plenty of innovation as a result.”
The clubs ratified the five-team play-off formula that will be introduced in Kingstone Press Championship One, which will feature the teams finishing in positions two to six with the club that finishes the regular season in first place being promoted as champions.
The Kingstone Press Championship One play-off structure will work as follows:
3rd-placed club v 4th-placed club (Match A)
5th-placed club v 6th-placed club (Match B)
(2nd-placed club have a bye to Week 2)
2nd-placed team v Winner Match A (winner to Play-off final, loser at home in Week 3) (Match C)
Losing team Match A v Winning team match B (loser eliminated) (Match D)
Losing team Match C v Winner Match D (winner to Play-off final, loser eliminated) (Match E)
Kingstone Press Championship One play-off final: Winner Match C v Winner Match.
The meeting also gave a positive reception to representatives from the competition’s new title sponsors Kingstone Press Cider, who gave a commitment to working with the clubs on joint initiatives throughout the 2013 and 2014 seasons.
The clubs received an update on options for the venues for the 2013 Northern Rail Cup final or Championships Finals Day, a decision on which will be made in the next few weeks.