Section B3: League Competition Rules
B3:1 The name of the league competitions shall be decided by SLE in the case of the “Super League” and the RFL in the case of all other competitions.
B3:2 All Members who are Clubs shall participate in one of the league competitions. The Board may in addition invite other Clubs (whether they are Members or not) to participate in any such league in which case such clubs as a condition of entry agree to be bound by these Operational Rules.
B3:3 Subject as set out in the Operational Rules, the management of the league competitions shall be vested entirely and exclusively in the RFL and the Board shall, in its absolute discretion, deal with all matters connected with or arising out of the competitions (which are not specifically dealt with under these Operational Rules).
STRUCTURE AND ENTRY
B3:4 The league competitions shall be divided into divisions the format of which shall be decided from time to time by SLE in accordance with the SLE Articles of Association, in the case of Super League, and by the Board in the case of Championship and League 1.
PROMOTION & RELEGATION
B3:5 Promotion and relegation between each of Super League and the Championship, and League 1, shall be in accordance with the resolutions of the Board agreed and in force from time to time, the latest of which as at the date of adoption of these Operational Rules are set out in Operational Rule Section A1 above.
TABLES AND FIXTURES
B3:6 The league competition tables for Super League, the Championship and League 1 shall be compiled by the RFL, the positions in which shall be determined by the number of points gained with points being awarded as follows:
- two points for each Match won; and
- one point for each Match drawn.
B3:7 The Club with the highest number of points shall be at the top and the Club with the lowest shall be at the bottom. Where Clubs have an equal number of points their relative positions shall be determined by points difference so that the Club having the greater points difference is placed above the Club with the lesser points difference. The points difference is calculated by subtracting the points scored against the Club from the points scored by the Club. If that still leads to a tie then the Club with the greater points percentage during the Season will be placed in the higher position. The points percentage is calculated by dividing the number of points scored by a Club by the number of points it concedes and multiplying by 100. If positions are still level, then the Club which scores the most tries in the league competition in a Season shall be placed higher, if the positions are still level, then the Club which scores the most goals shall be placed higher, if the positions are still level then the Club which scores the most drop goals. If the positions are still equal, positions will be determined by the toss of a coin which shall be carried out at such time and place as the RFL shall direct and those Clubs concerned shall be entitled to witness the toss.
- The Board shall be responsible for compiling a fixture list for all phases of all competitions including Super League. The copyright in all fixtures lists produced by the RFL shall be owned by the RFL. Clubs shall ensure that all draft fixture lists are kept confidential and not disclosed to any other person and shall only disclose final fixture lists once authorised by the RFL.
- Subject to paragraph (c) below, each Club shall compete in all League fixtures in which it is due to play in accordance with the fixture list. If a Club fails to complete any of its fixtures for whatever reason the result of Matches played and/or unplayed shall be determined by the Board and the Board shall have the right to alter the structure of the competition by such means as it thinks fit.
- Cup Ties shall take precedence over League Matches and the latter must be postponed if the Board so directs.
- Each Club shall play its "home" League Match on its ground and its "away" League Match on its opponents' ground unless the Board consents to or directs any other arrangement.
- A list of fixtures shall be commissioned by the Board who shall in addition administer the league competitions. For the Regular Season draft fixture list, the Clubs shall be allowed 3 days to submit observations. Each Club shall also notify the Board of the day on which it wishes to play its weekend home Matches and the kick-off times for those Matches (within such timescale). After consideration of the same the Board will then publish the fixture list incorporating such amendments (if any) as it considers appropriate.
- For the Super 8s Phase of competition Clubs will be notified of the period of time they are permitted to submit observations on the draft Super 8s fixture list. The Clubs acknowledge that due to the calendar the time period to submit observations will be very limited.
- Where a Championship or League 1 Club has elected to play its home games on Friday and its opponent objects the Board shall decide on which day the Match shall be played. Such decision shall be based on the principle that part time Clubs shall not be compelled by their opponents to make long or time consuming journeys save on Saturday, Sunday, Bank Holidays or for televised matches, the RFL Board shall decide what constitutes a long or time consuming journey and whether extenuating circumstances apply which make it reasonable for the Board to instruct that a game should be played on a Friday.
- The fixture list and the fixtures contained therein are to remain unalterable without the prior written consent of the Board to any change(s).
- Each season the RFL broadcast partner will make an initial selection of Matches to be televised for the number of rounds determined in the contract. These selections will be published. All subsequent rounds remain subject to selection by the broadcast partner and all Clubs must include a statement within its fixtures to this effect (as provided by the RFL from time to time) whenever its fixtures are published in whatever format. If a Club is unable to stage a Match on its own ground on the date or at the time required by the RFL or SLE’s broadcast partners the Board may direct that such Match be played at an alternative venue (which may be the ground of its opponents) on the date and at the time so required.
- In addition the Board may require that one or more Clubs play its home League Match in the final round of the Season at such date and time as may be directed by the Board in order for one or more Matches to kick off simultaneously.
- The Board shall have power to amend fixtures where it considers it necessary to do so from time to time which shall include the power to direct that matches shall be moved so as to be played on the same date and at the same time as other matches to ensure that the integrity of the League is protected.
AVAILABILITY OF GROUND
B3:9 Each Club agrees to allow its ground and/or facilities to be used for a Match/Matches between two other Clubs in the same competition if the Board so directs. When a Match is played on a neutral ground, a commission may at the discretion of the Board (up to a maximum commission of ten per cent) be deducted from net gate receipts or paid to the Club upon whose ground the Match is played, but members and spectators of such Club must pay the full admission charges to the ground and stands and shall not be allowed any discount over and above those available in relation to tickets on general sale.
B3:10 All League Match Officials shall be appointed by the RFL and their remuneration and expenses shall be decided by the Board.
PLAY OFFS AND LEAGUE FINALS
Detailed provisions on the format and venues of the League Competitions are set out in Section A1 of the Operational Rules.
If any of the Play off Matches is drawn, then the Match shall be decided by a "Golden Point". During this period of Golden Point teams shall be allowed to make three additional interchanges. For the avoidance of doubt any unused interchanges from normal time are carried over and may be used in the period of extra time and Golden Point.
B3:12 In each of the Super League Grand Final, the Championship Shield Final and the League 1 Grand Final , the Club which was highest placed in the league concerned shall be deemed to have home ground advantage as regards dressing room and otherwise. However in the case of colours the RFL will direct the colours to be worn in the Kit Directive.
OBJECTIONS TO RESULTS
B3:13 A Club wishing to object to the result of a Match shall:
- Send an email to the RFL’s Chief Operating Officer and to the opposing Club within 24 hours of the termination of the Match stating:
- the full grounds on which the objection is made; and
- the Operational Rule under which it is laid.
- Send within 24 hours a £250 cheque to the RFL as a deposit. The Board will hear the objection and may decline to consider any matter not stated in respect of (i) above and can if the objection is not sustained order the forfeit of the whole or any part of the deposit. For the avoidance of doubt, a Club shall not be entitled to object to a result on the grounds of a Match Official's decision(s), and the imposition of a fine or other penalty on a Club pursuant to these Operational Rules shall not preclude a Club from objecting to a result of a Match under this Operational Rule.
B3:14 All disputes relating to the venue, time and date of any Match or any other dispute relating to the League or other Competitions shall be determined by the Board in its absolute discretion unless otherwise provided for in these Operational Rules.
TROPHIES AND MEDALS
B3:15 The RFL/SLE are the owners of the Trophies which shall be handed to the winning Club for safe keeping by them and shall be returned in turn to the RFL/SLE in good condition on the last working day the following June in time for the following year's presentation. Subject to Operational Rule Section B3:17 and 18 below, the winning Club shall be responsible for the cost of any repairs required to ensure that the Trophies are returned to the RFL/SLE in good condition. No Club shall commission or carry out itself any repairs, engraving, alterations or other work on any such Trophy. The RFL/SLE shall be entitled to commission such replicas of the Trophies as they may think fit from time to time.
B3:16 Save as expressly provided in this Operational Rule, no Club shall be entitled to any trophy and no Players or officials shall be entitled to any medals in relation to the Super League, Championship or League 1 competitions.
- The Club at the top of the Super League after the end of the Super 8s shall be awarded the League Leaders Shield. The winners of the Super League Grand Final shall be awarded the Super League trophy and twenty five Grand Final winners’ rings for their players and officials. The other finalist team will receive twenty five medals only. Clubs may apply to SLE to purchase additional medals in exceptional circumstances only.
- The winners of the Championship Shield Grand Final shall be awarded the Championship Shield.
- The Club at the top of League 1 after the end of the Regular Season shall be awarded the League 1 Leaders trophy. In addition the winners of the 1st v 2nd Play Off Match (the League 1 Promotion Final) shall be awarded the League 1 Champions bowl and twenty five League 1 medals for their players and officials. Clubs may apply to the RFL to purchase additional medals in exceptional circumstances only. The winners of the League 1 Grand Final shall be awarded the League 1 Play-off Trophy.
When a player is dismissed during a Grand Final or Play Off Final, the medal to which he may otherwise have been entitled may be withheld at the discretion of the Board.
B3:17 The winning Club(s) agree not to do anything which may invalidate the RFL's insurance policy relating to the Trophies or increase the premiums in relation thereto. Should a Trophy be lost, destroyed or damaged whilst under the care or custody of a winning Club, then the Club shall refund to the RFL the amount of the insured value of the Trophy or the cost of thorough repair in addition to any other penalty which may be imposed pursuant to Section D1 of these Operational Rules. The RFL shall insure the Trophies for their full replacement value and the cost of such insurance will be met by the RFL.
B3:18 No Club may copy, disfigure, repair, add to or alter a Trophy (or the medals) or permit any third party to do so without the RFL's prior written consent.
B3:19 Payments, gifts or any other forms of inducement including (but not by way of limitation) payments in kind and free or discounted tickets, made or given to any Match Official as an inducement or reward (other than those made by the RFL by way of remuneration or expenses under Operational Rule Section B3:10 above and/or any medals given by the RFL) shall be prohibited and any Club, player or other person making any such payment, gift or inducement shall be deemed guilty of misconduct. For the avoidance of doubt, a Club should give each Match Official two free tickets per Match at which he/she is officiating.