There’s a big rugby league story breaking in the national newspapers today.
Challenge Cup Final to be brought forward
The Challenge Cup final is set to be brought forward as early as June, according to reports in the Daily Mail.
There has been widespread disappointment at the 50,672 attendance for Catalans’ win over Warrington, with many pointing to the addition to the Magic Weekend to the calendar and the travel chaos as reasons for the decline in crowds for rugby league’s greatest event.
The final has been played in August since it returned to Wembley Stadium in 2007. The previous two finals, hosted at Twickenham and Millennium Stadium, were also played in late August.
Previously, the final had been held in May, around the date now taken over by the Magic Weekend.
The Mail says the change won’t happen for 2019, but talks have already started regarding a new date for 2020.
Cronulla involved in NRL salary cap question mark
The NRL play-offs are threatening to be overshadowed by a new scandal involving Cronulla Sharks, who are being investigated for historical third-party discrepancies, according to The Guardian. It is understood that it won’t affect their first premiership in 2016, while the NRL have said all clubs are salary compliant for 2018.
Warrington aiming for Super League title
“It’s happened now, we can’t take it back but what we can control is the rest of the season. We’re still fighting for our first ever Super League title.” That’s the message from Warrington coach Steve Price in the Warrington Guardian as he prepares to lift his troops from their Wembley disappointment to take on Hull FC in front of the Sky Sports cameras on Thursday night.
Support rugby league in the media and subscribe to League Express or League Weekly, as well as checking out the regular coverage of the sport in The Mirror, The Sun, The Guardian and other national newspapers; the more you read, the more there’ll be.