Whitehaven secure promotion to Championship

James Messenger

Whitehaven will play in the second-tier for the first time since 2016 next season after being crowned champions of Betfred League 1. 

Gary Charlton’s side wrapped up the title with a monumental 72-0 victory away at Coventry, securing their 15th win of the season in the process.

Jordan Burns crossed for a hat-trick, while there were two tries apiece for David Thompson, Callum Phillips and Jake Moore – who also added seven goals to complete a personal 26-point haul.

Haven have averaged just shy of 30 points per game in 2019 and have only conceded 283 points all season, giving them the best defensive record of any side in the division.

Following the match, hat-trick hero Burns told OuRLeague: “Before the game, everyone was so nervous. I don’t think anyone expected this at the start of the year, I think we were predicted to finish 7th.

“We all believe in ourselves and our ability, and we just wanted to go out there and see it off and win the league and that’s what we’ve done.”

Marc Shackley, captain of the Cumbrian club, was presented with the trophy by the RFL’s Chief Executive Ralph Rimmer at Webb Ellis Road.

Two sides will be promoted to the second tier this season, taking the places of the already-relegated Rochdale and Barrow.

The five teams who will compete for the second promotion spot are Oldham, Newcastle, Hunslet, Doncaster and Workington, with the play-offs set to get underway next weekend.

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