The Toronto Wolfpack and their fans will need to wait a bit longer. Their application to return to Super League has been deferred to next month according to Sky Sports. As a result, the Wolfpack has four more weeks to convince Super League.
The Toronto Wolfpack Decision Deferred to October
The Wolfpack has four more weeks to convince Super League.
Breaking: Super League has deffered its decision on Toronto Wolfpack to give Carlo LiVolsi more time to work on his submission. LiVolsi will also speak and present to the Super League board himself. He's been given 4 weeks more to work on his business plan & the financial detail.
— John Davidson (@johnnyddavidson) September 25, 2020
There are 13 votes to determine the fate of the Toronto Wolfpack. 11 of these votes are given to Super League clubs. Also, one of them is given to the RFL (Rugby Football League), and the other to Robert Elstone, Chief Executive of Super League.
It is rumoured that the RFL is in favour of the Wolfpack returning. However, Elstone has strong reservations about the Toronto Wolfpack. This means that the fate of the Toronto Wolfpack will lie on the shoulders of the 11 Super League clubs.
The deferment is seen as good news for the Toronto Wolfpack. If teams voted today, it is likely that the Wolfpack would be denied Super League status. Elstone explains this a bit further on Sky Sports.
Super League's executive chairman Robert Elstone gave us the latest on Toronto after the Wolfpack's prospective new owners were given a deadline of October 23 to re-submit their proposal for inclusion in @SuperLeague 2021.
— Sky Sports Rugby League (@SkySportsRL) September 25, 2020
Elstone would also later say he was disappointed with the bid according to James Gordon of Love Rugby League.
“What we saw first time was frankly disappointing and what we hope to see is something much more stronger.”
Bob Hunter, CEO and chairman of the Toronto Wolfpack, revealed some more details. He said the club will learn whether further questions will be asked on Monday.
On the positive, Matthew Shaw said that there is a fair chance for Wolfpack.
The next month gives LiVolsi time to ease those fears and prove he has the money to fund it. If he can do that, I'd say there is a fair chance Toronto will be around next year. In effect, Toronto got the outcome they hoped for today, it's up to them now to do what they need to.
— Matthew Shaw (@M_Shaw1) September 25, 2020
The majority of Super League clubs are likely to give the Toronto Wolfpack the greenlight if the concerns are met. The Wolfpack now has a second chance to make things right.
Overview of the decisions made on Friday
It is important to note that the Toronto Wolfpack is not out of the woods. The status of their Super League application is still to be decided. Furthermore, potential owner Carlo LiVolsi is only interested in the Wolfpack if they remain in Super League. However, there is a path for the Wolfpack to return next year.
There has been a lot of support shown on social media for the Toronto Wolfpack. This includes major sports organizations like MLSE and Canada Rugby League. MLSE stands for Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment. They own Toronto FC, the Maple Leafs, Raptors, and Argonauts.
— Canada Rugby League (@CanadaRL) September 24, 2020
Lastly, there was public support from current Toronto mayor John Tory. Tory was part of Wolfpack’s first-ever press conference in April 2016.
— Toronto Wolfpack (@TOwolfpack) September 22, 2020
Rugby league has traditionally struggled to expand to new markets. A big reason for this is popularity and attendance, which the Wolfpack has. It is something that should not be taken for granted, especially in a crowded sports market like Toronto. They averaged 7,882 fans per game last year in the Championship. That is higher than some Super League teams’ attendance in 2019.
Main image credit: Embed from Getty Images