Halifax withdraw from reserves league

Championship side Halifax have pulled out of the new reserves league for 2020.

In August, they were announced as one of 15 teams in the new set up, alongside the 10 English Super League clubs, London Broncos, Bradford, Widnes and Newcastle Thunder.

They have been a champion of the reserves set up in recent years, when very few other clubs have opted to run one since it became optional.

The changes mean it became mandatory for all Super League clubs and those with category 1 academies to enter reserve sides.

A club statement said: “Having recently taken over the running of the club, the current Board of Directors have undertaken a root to branch examination of all aspects of the Club.

“We have left no stone unturned and are in the process of changing many things, all for the benefit and financial security of the business.

“It is therefore with some disappointment and regret that, as a result of further in depth analysis and changes, we are announcing that we will not be running a Reserve Grade team for the 2020 season. This has not been an easy decision to reach especially having been granted a place in the new set up.”

They say the additional running costs and issues with recruitment are reasons behind the withdrawal, as well as concerns over player welfare with the prospect of inexperienced amateur players coming up against seasoned Super League pros.