Robert Elstone acknowledges RFL’s “tireless work” of securing government loan

Super League chief executive Robert Elstone has praised the “tireless work” the RFL has put in to secure a £16million loan from the government.

The government has pledged a £16million emergency loan to the Rugby Football League to help save the sport.

The loan will help the game deal with the financial difficulties it has suffered while in the coronavirus pandemic.

Elstone said: “Arriving at the most challenging time in our 125-year history, this is critical and invaluable support.

“For many people, particularly in the north of England, rugby league is more than a sport: our clubs are key employers and play an essential role in local economies; they are also vital social hubs where families bond and communities stand proudly together.

“This pledge by the government is indicative of the unique role Super League clubs play in those communities.

“Throughout this pandemic, Super League and the governing body, the RFL, have been united in consistently putting forward that message, and we are delighted it has been heard loud and clear at such an important time. The game is grateful that the government has backed up promises it made to the North of the England at the general election.”

Elstone was full of praise for the RFL’s work throughout the process of gaining a government loan, with rugby league becoming the first sport to receive financial support during the coronavirus crisis.

He added: “Super League has had to make many difficult decisions over the past few weeks responding to the outbreak of COVID-19.

“Clearly those decisions were exacerbated by the absence of any clarity on what lies ahead. This news will alleviate some of those concerns and provide much-needed certainty about the future.

“Super League would like to acknowledge the tireless work of the RFL in securing such vital support.

“Make no mistake, a challenging period still lies ahead and public safety and the protection of our communities remains our priority.

“But, at a tough time, the game has had a good day – we can now look forward, with more confidence, while we continue to play our part in the country’s recovery.”

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