Sir Lindsay Hoyle on new RFL presidency role, opposing Sky’s original deal and ‘making a difference’

Sir Lindsay Hoyle with World Cups SWpix

Photo: Simon Wilkinson/SWpix

Sir Lindsay Hoyle intends to “make a real difference” when he becomes president of the Rugby Football League for 2023.

The 65-year-old Speaker of the House of Commons will become the 31st president of the governing body in December. He will take over from Clare Balding for the 2023 season.

He was first introduced to the sport by his father, Doug Hoyle, who was MP for Warrington and chairman of the town’s rugby league club from 1999-2009. 

Hoyle admitted he voted against the £87m Sky deal in 1995 and has previously had run-ins with the RFL as he looks to “make a difference” to the sport he loves.

“I’ve been known not to support them (RFL),” he said.

“When Super League came in, it was meant to be for the benefit of all. But it wasn’t, it was for the benefit of the few, to the exclusion of the many.

“Don’t get me wrong, Super League has been great and the money investment has been great but what you don’t do is cut off the funds to other clubs.

“So I didn’t support the Sky deal, far from it. Some turkeys might vote for Christmas – this turkey didn’t.

“What I will say is that we’ve have had our differences but the one thing we all have in common in a passion for the game.

“What I want to see is a more integrated game so that it’s seamless from the top to the bottom.”


Sir Lindsay Hoyle aiming to make an impact

Hoyle played a significant role in securing a £16million Government emergency loan to help rugby league through the coronavirus pandemic.

Having been a fan of the sport since the 1970s, he now says he wants to continue to make an impact on the sport with hopes to spread the game to more fans.

“I am so passionate about the game, I will work with anyone because I want to make a real difference,” he said.

“I want to be that true supporter of rugby league not just somebody who turns up and nods. Whatever I can do to lift the profile, I will.

“It’s a great sport. The problem we have is that not enough people know about it.

“Let’s build on the success of the Lionesses. They lifted the whole profile of women within football and I would love to see our women picking up the World Cup as well.”

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