Off the Record: Rugby League Rumours and Gossip #184

Will Toronto cover travel costs of Super League teams? Do Ottawa want central funding? Who is the latest Hull KR signing? Find out in the rumour and gossip column.

Toronto to continue block fixtures

Toronto are waiting for confirmation on how their fixtures will look in Super League, but they are likely to be played in home and away blocks.

The beginning of the season will take a similar approach to previous years, with the Wolfpack playing on the road in the UK for the opening months of the season. Home games won’t commence at the Lamport Stadium until at least April, due to the climate.

Oldham set for ground change

Oldham are set to return to Bower Fold, home of Stalybridge Celtic FC, following their promotion to the Championship.

Their Vestacare Stadium home doesn’t meet the minimum requirements of the second tier, and the Roughyeds previously played at the ground in 2016 and 2017, their last stint in the division.

Hull KR to announce Minikin

As reported in Off the Record in May, Greg Minikin is departing Castleford for Hull KR and the Tigers inadvertently revealed the move in a hastily deleted tweet that was presumably meant to be scheduled.

Expect the former York centre’s arrival at Craven Park to be confirmed imminently.

Toronto cover travel costs

It is believed that Toronto will still subsidise teams’ travel to Canada even following their promotion to Super League.

It had been speculated that surrendering their central funding would mean the other clubs would foot the bill themselves, though that doesn’t seem to be the case according to one top club official.

Leigh and Featherstone eye Bennion

Highly-rated Swinton forward Gavin Bennion is attracting plenty of attention due to the ongoing uncertainty with the club’s future.

Leigh and Featherstone are keeping an eye on the situation for the former Warrington academy player. Hull KR had a bid for him rejected last season. He is a Wales international.

Ottawa want central funding

Ottawa’s delayed entry to League 1 follows a wrangle over central funding, with owner Eric Perez arguing he shouldn’t have to waive his right to the central distribution as he owns a member club, having taken over Hemel’s licence with the RFL.

Any overseas club wishing to join the league is being asked to waive rights to central funding. While it’s not an issue in the lower leagues, particularly with its likely reduction or even abolition in 2021, prospective owners are concerned at the impact of not being able to take central funding when they reach Super League.


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