The fate of Toronto Wolfpack could be finally determined at a crucial meeting of Super League clubs on Monday.
The Canadian club’s application to rejoin the competition is part of a packed agenda that includes proposals to curtail the regular season ahead of an expanded play-off series and a look at the make-up for the 2021 campaign.
Toronto businessman Carlo LiVolsi, the Wolfpack’s prospective new owner, has been invited to address delegates at the virtual meeting and that is likely to be followed by a discussion and potential vote on his plan to revitalise the club following their withdrawal midway through the 2020 season.
The Ontario club’s initial business plan was thrown out a month ago by delegates, who opted to give them a second chance to demonstrate their financial viability and potential value to Super League.
LiVolsi met last Friday’s deadline to re-submit his bid and his plans have been circulated among the other 11 clubs.
“I thought our re-submission was good,” Toronto chairman and chief executive Bob Hunter told the PA news agency. “We re-did our financials.
“It certainly got into a higher level of detail and provided Super League with more comfort that our overall business plan was solid and that we’ve got long-term sustainability and an owner that is quite committed.”
Hunter is confident former Leeds coach Brian McDermott will stay with the club if they are re-admitted, despite being linked with a move to Cronulla as John Morris’ assistant.
“There’s lots of rumours floating around and I ignore them,” Hunter said. “I know Brian wants to be with the Toronto Wolfpack and, if we can get this thing across the line right way, I’m confident he will be our coach next year.”
If clubs vote against Toronto’s return, they will then have to decide whether Super League should run with 11 teams in 2021 or begin the search for a new 12th member.
Meanwhile, clubs appear to be be divided over proposals for a late change to the play-off series.
Leeds and St Helens are thought to be leading plans to scrap the last two rounds of fixtures, following more postponements and cancellations caused by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, and implement a play-off series featuring more than the top four clubs.
Wakefield are among those against such a move and Warrington coach Steve Price also believes the new system, only introduced in September, should be allowed to stand.
“There’s been a lot of people putting their cases forward,” he said. “We’ll just have to wait and see what the RFL come down with.
“They outlined a number of weeks ago how it was going to unfold with the number of games and the points system so I feel they should stand by that.”
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