The Rugby Football Union (RFU) has revealed that the Greene King IPA Championship, rugby union’s second tier, will be simulated to provide the league with a complete campaign in which promotion and relegation will be decided.
The final standings will be calculated on a ‘best playing record formula’ essentially confirming that the Newcastle Falcons will be promoted to the Premiership, replacing Saracens who have already secured relegation.
RFU President, Peter Wheeler, stated: “We believe that the decisions made provide fair and balanced outcomes for the game and maintain the integrity of the competitions. We have listened to recommendations from the heart of the game and the approach has been ratified by the RFU Council.
“This has been a difficult decision to make in the most unprecedented of circumstances. There is no single solution that will suit every club, but the approach taken is one that we believe best reflects the nature of league rugby in England.
“With 80% of the season complete for the community game, we believe our approach is fair and the right one for our leagues. We have clubs that are clear league leaders and those who have said they would benefit from relegation to play more meaningful rugby.”
Newcastle Falcons had won every game in the Greene King IPA Championship prior to the leagues suspension due to COVID-19, meaning that through the new calculation the side will almost certainly clinch promotion. Whereas Saracens had confirmed relegation after being deducted a total of 105 points for repeated salary cap breaches.
RFU’s decision to simulate its leagues will also apply to all men’s and women’s community games, whilst a decision on how to settle the Gallagher Premiership has yet to be decided.
The organisation also announced that the Tyrrells Premier 15s season has been declared null and void due to the fact there is no promotion or relegation.
RFU will release the full calculated standing of the league’s mentioned at 6pm Friday April 3, 2020.