Featherstone frustrated dispensations weren’t granted earlier

Featherstone have thanked the RFL for allowing them to register players for this weekend’s Championship Shield final, but are frustrated it wasn’t done earlier.

Rovers have been playing with 15 men for the majority of their Championship Shield campaign, which has seen them come top of the eight competing teams, six points clear of Leigh, who they will face at the LD Nutrition Stadium on Sunday.

It comes after both clubs lost players having finished outside the top four of the Championship, missing out on The Qualifiers and suffering a significant reduction in central funding.

In response to statements from both Leigh and the RFL over the situation, Featherstone issued their own.

It read: “The club is relieved that the RFL granted the request for the Centurions to be able to bolster their squad and this will also enable us to make additions to a team where players have had to battle hard over the last two months.

“This will add to the product on offer to supporters on Sunday afternoon and compensate for the decision to ban two of Featherstone’s fit players.

“The club is frustrated that similar dispensations could not be made at the start of the Betfred Championship Shield, when it initially made a request, but is thankful that the RFL have finally shown some common sense.

“Featherstone Rovers would also like to send a huge thank you to its squad of players, who have repeatedly shown spirit and ground out results with no complaints, throughout the course of the Championship Shield campaign.

“They earned the right to host this final and the club hopes they receive the reception they deserve for their efforts.

“It was never in doubt that the Championship Shield Final would go ahead and the club was disappointed to see this cast in doubt by the Leigh Centurions statement, which was released as the dispensation was being agreed.

“The club does understand that the Centurions are currently under a lot of financial strain however, and hope they can recover significantly enough to join us in a challenge for the play-offs in 2019.”

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