Super League boost for Featherstone

Featherstone’s bid for Super League has been boosted by a positive meeting with RFL Director of Standards and Licensing, Blake Solly.

Rovers, the current Championship holders, have already launched their “Destination Super League” campaign, leading up to possible inclusion ahead of the 2015 season.

Although they met the on-field criteria, Featherstone decided not to apply in the last round of licensing, which saw Widnes earn a place in the top flight.

They instead decided to focus their attention on getting things right for 2015, and under new chief executive Craig Poskitt, they have made several forward steps in 2012 already.

Poskitt said: “We are very positive after meeting Blake that our ambitions to achieve Super League status are being received in a serious light by the RFL. Blake has pointed out a couple of areas for development, but we have already put in place measures to address these issues. 

“When we meet Blake again, we are sure we will be able to demonstrate the positive moves we have made to develop in these areas. Overall the impression we have is that Featherstone Rovers are now being taken seriously by the whole Rugby League community – as well as the RFL.”

Featherstone’s stature within the game was boosted last weekend by their televised Challenge Cup scalp of Super League side Castleford, who could be one of the clubs anxiously looking over their shoulders when the next licensing decision is made.

Rovers chairman Mark Campbell added: “Rovers are in a unique situation within Rugby League, the Club owns the ground and the surrounding land which gives us the opportunity to develop the area and bring much needed jobs to the area.

“We are the hub of this community and we want to drive the town forward and deliver Super League rugby to the fans and wider community.”

The licensing process looks at all aspects of a club, from their youth development and stadium facilities, to finances and on-field performance.

Blake Solly from the RFL said: “Featherstone Rovers are in good financial order and the development of their ground is in progress. With better facilities the club can attract more fans which is vital for a successful licence bid. Overall I think the club are heading in the right direction and I look forward to our future meetings to hear about their progress.”

Featherstone will reveal more details from the meeting at fans forum next Tuesday, April 24th.

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