Super League chairman Ken Davy says they are fully behind the World Cup organisers following the withdrawal of Australia and New Zealand.
The Kangaroos and Kiwis have withdrawn from this year’s World Cup in England, saying it is unsafe to travel due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The two governing bodies – the ARLC and NZRL – have called for the tournament to be postponed until 2022, with this year’s tournament now in serious doubt.
Davy said: “The organisers have done everything possible to provide both nations with strong evidence of the robust protocols and procedures to keep players safe.
“It is quite astounding that athletes from Australia and New Zealand are about to compete in the Olympics, in addition to the Australian and New Zealand rugby union teams being in the UK this Autumn, yet their rugby league counterparts have decided to withdraw.
“The UK has already shown that it can successfully deliver a major international event in EURO 2020, under far stricter conditions to those anticipated in the Autumn.
“We are fully behind Jon Dutton and his RLWC2021 team. We continue to offer Super League’s utmost support to the tournament organisers given the significant benefits this event can deliver for the sport.”
A RLWC2021 spokesperson responded to Australia and New Zealand’s decision, saying: “RLWC2021 note the disappointing statement made by the ARLC and NZRL which may have wide ranging implications for international rugby league.
“RLWC2021 were informed at very short notice and will continue discussions with all stakeholders to agree on the best way forward. A further statement will be made in due course.”
The World Cup is scheduled to get underway at St James’ Park in Newcastle on October 23, when hosts England take on Samoa in the opening game.