THE RFL have released plans for a restructuring of the game from 2014 onwards with four options being on the table, three of which will reintroduce promotion and relegation.
Of those three, two Leagues’ with 12 teams in each and a two up two down relationship would seem to be the simplest, whilst three division of 10 teams that play each other three times for 27 fixtures is being backed by former Great Britain captain Jamie Peacock.
But the most controversial is one that offers two division of 12 teams that play each other once before the two divisions split in three division of eight, with the middle division determining who is in Super League for the following term and who isn’t.
Paul Rowley is in favour of the three divisions of 10.
“As a coach, all I say is keep it simple, and although the proposals for three divisions of eight is certainly something new, I think it is overly complicated and will put potential fans and sponsors off!
“It would also open questions as to who will run the game? Will the top eight be the sole decision makers or will every one of the 24 clubs have a say in what goes on and how the SL money is distributed? There are more questions than answers for me and we need to go with what everyone can simply understand.”
Just how clubs would feel they are in Super League when they play just 11 games before being assigned to a second division of eight for finishing in the bottom four after the first 11 rounds, is something that is not clear. The clubs would then have another 14 games during which they would be battling for their Super League lives against the top four clubs of the Championship.
But even in that environment, the disparity in funding will make it difficult for the Championship clubs to match even the worst of the Super League clubs when it comes to playing strength.