Paper Talk: RFL wanted 1895 Cup final curtain raiser, professional Blackpool proposal, Williams transfer fee

Drew Darbyshire

We’ve had a scan through this morning’s papers.

RFL wanted 1895 Cup final as curtain raiser

The Rugby Football League has explained why they have been forced to stage the 1895 Cup final after the Challenge Cup final, report League Express.

The governing body would have preferred the game to be a curtain raiser, however logistical issues have prevented them from making that happen, according to League Express. An RFL spokesperson said: “For a variety of reasons, including the desire to preserve the tradition around the schoolboy curtain-raiser, the need for the Challenge Cup final, now sponsored by Coral who are one of the betting sites with Cheltenham offers, teams to warm up on the Wembley pitch, and the desire for the game to maximise our moment in the national spotlight through BBC coverage of the Coral Challenge Cup final, the only way of making the day work was for this inaugural 1895 Cup final to be played later in the day.”

Dewsbury’s reserve proposal snubbed

The Rugby Football League has refused to sanction reserve grade games for clubs without a team in their competition, report League Express.

Instead, clubs are being told to send their players out to clubs on dual-registration who do run reserve grade teams in order to get players game time. League Express have revealed the governing body have denied Dewsbury Rams’ plans to play a reserve game against Halifax as they did not officially register to pay in this year’s competition.

Professional Blackpool team back on the agenda

A meeting will take place in Blackpool on Tuesday which will determine the next moves to try and reinstate professional rugby league in the seaside town, report League Weekly.

The former supporters club of Blackpool Borough and Blackpool Gladiators has remained in place and with fundraisers, they have continued to sponsor National Conference League clubs and professional clubs over the past decade. League Weekly claim they have already informed RFL chief executive Ralph Rimmer of their plans to rejuvenate rugby league in Blackpool.

Widnes to appeal for parachute payment

New Widnes chief executive Phil Finney insists the Vikings are determined to keep their current squad together this season, before revealing they will make a presentation to Super League in the coming weeks in an appeal for the remainder of their parachute payment, report League Express.

Finney admitted the club had taken early advances of central funding from the RFL and they will now ask Super League for the remaining £130,000 of their parachute payment after the top-flight had decided to withhold it for the time being. Finney told League Express: “We’ve spoken to them about that and we’re going to have to present to Super League and explain why we should continue to receive it. It will be really helpful if we can retain it, but it will be determined by Robert Elstone.”

Canberra to stump up fee for Williams

Canberra Raiders will have to pay a fee of £175,000 to Wigan Warriors if they are to secure the services of George Williams, report League Weekly.

The England international has been heavily linked with a move to the NRL ahead of 2020, and The Mole reported last week that he has signed a three-year deal with the Raiders. League Weekly suggest Canberra will pay the Warriors £175,000 for promising half-back Williams.

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