Doncaster RLFC: Promotion hopes could be boosted by proposal for 14-team Championship

Jack Logan in action against London
Jack Logan in action against London

Doncaster RLFC’s promotion hopes could be boosted by a last-minute change to the regulations.

The Dons, who are without a game this weekend due to the Challenge Cup final, currently occupy fourth spot in Betfred League 1.

A top five finish, at present, guarantees a place in the end of season promotion play-offs.

But sixth place would also be good enough to secure a play-off spot if a proposal to expand the Championship to 14 teams in 2019 gets the green light.

And, in all likelihood, Doncaster would not have to face either of the division’s best two sides – York City Knights and Bradford Bulls – if they qualify.

According to Total RL, the RFL have levied a proposal to Championship and League 1 clubs which includes expanding the second tier by two extra teams next season and removing the current Super 8s structure.

The proposed league structure has not yet been signed off but is expected to get enough votes to be passed through for next season.

If it does the format of this season’s competition will be changed at a very late stage.

The top two sides, instead of just the team finishing top, would be automatically promoted from League 1. York and Bradford currently sit first and second.

The play-off series including the sides finishing between 2nd and 5th would change to the teams between 3rd and 6th, with the winner gaining the third and final promotion spot.

In addition only the side finishing bottom of the Championship would be relegated instead of the bottom two.

Doncaster are currently on 30 points, two ahead of Oldham in fifth and Hunslet in sixth, and four ahead of seventh-placed Whitehaven.

There are four games of the regular league season remaining.