RFL confirms cancellation of Champion Schools competitions

The RFL has confirmed the cancellation of the Champion Schools competitions.

The majority of the 10 competitions had reached the regional finals stage when rugby league activity was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic in March.

Two sets of regional finals had been played – for boys in the North East, and London and the South East – but the Yorkshire, North West and Cumbria finals were all postponed.

The RFL has reluctantly concluded that while playing the regional finals may be possible, it will not be practical to stage the national finals days which are usually held in the summer term.

RFL chief executive Ralph Rimmer said: “While we realise there will be many higher profile sporting fixtures and competitions that are affected by the current situation, this is an especially sad cancellation for us to announce.

“The Warners Champion Schools competitions give so much enjoyment to so many youngsters, as a result of a huge amount of work and organisation that is put in by teachers, parents and our RFL staff – with generous financial support from Gary Warner over the last two years.

“The National Finals Days have become established at Victoria Park in Warrington over the last couple of summers, and the Steven Mullaney Memorial Match is a special part of Challenge Cup final day at Wembley.

“Unfortunately, the unique circumstances of 2020 mean it won’t be possible for the competitions to be completed. We will do all we can to play more of the regional finals, and hopefully the majority of the boys and girls who have been involved in this year’s matches will join us in looking forward to making the tournament even bigger and better in 2021.

“Congratulations to the winners of those regional finals that have been played – and to everyone who took part in the Warners Champion Schools of 2020.”

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