New era for Tier Two of Women’s Rugby League
2024 heralds a new era for Women’s Rugby League and, as the national pyramid comes into play, the Rugby Football League today reveals a new identity for its tier two competitions.
Sitting beneath the tier one Betfred Women’s Super League (BWSL) will be three regional competitions: the Midlands Women’s Championship; the Northern Women’s Championship; and the Southern Women’s Championship.
Bradford Bulls, Castleford Tigers, Leigh Leopards and Salford Red Devils are joined in the Northern Women’s Championship by Dewsbury Moor, Hull KR, Sheffield Eagles, Oulton Raidettes and Stanningley, with the first round of fixtures scheduled for Saturday March 2.
And the Southern Women’s Championship gets underway on the weekend of May 25/26, and will include Army RL, Bedford Tigers, Cardiff Demons and London Broncos.
The winners of the Northern and Southern championship will face each other on Saturday September 28 for the national champion title – and for the right to compete for a place in the Betfred Women’s Super League against the side finishing bottom in that competition.
Thomas Brindle, the General Manager of the BWSL, said: “This will be a landmark year for the women’s game, with 2024 the beginning of a new national pyramid which will give our teams sitting in tier two a chance at promotion into the Super League.
“We will also have divisions sitting underneath each championship, meaning that promotion and relegation is a possibility across all levels of the women’s game for the first time. National expansion has been part of our strategy for Women’s and Girls’ Rugby League since the introduction of the Women’s Super League in 2017 so we are all looking forward to getting the season started.
“As we enter this new era, we felt it right to refresh our branding for these competitions so that they all operate under an elevated identity which should help us on our next step as we look to attract investment into tier two of the game.”
Teams competing in the Midlands will play in a festival format this year with the intention to expand into a full league structure as the competition expands.