Pilkington Recs and Thatto Heath in Challenge Cup first round draw

The first round draw for the 2020 Coral Challenge Cup is staged on Thursday, December 5 and will include St Helens amateur clubs Pilkington Recs and Thatto Heath Crusaders.
The first round draw for the 2020 Coral Challenge Cup is staged on Thursday, December 5 and will include St Helens amateur clubs Pilkington Recs and Thatto Heath Crusaders.

The Rugby Football League will celebrate the impact of the CreatedBy RLWC2021 Capital Grants Programme when the first round draw for the 2020 Coral Challenge Cup is staged at Bentley ARLFC in Doncaster on Thursday, December 5, and will include St Helens amateur clubs Pilkington Recs and Thatto Heath Crusaders.

The draw will be streamed live on the BBC Sport website, red button and the BBC Sport connected TV app, as well as through RFL channels - the BBC beginning another year of covering every round of the Challenge Cup in 2020 by selecting one tie to be streamed live on the weekend of January 11-12.

Bentley, who won the Yorkshire Men’s League last season to earn their place alongside 43 other community clubs and teams in the opening round draw, are one of dozens of successful applicants who have already shared in more than £1m of funding made available to ensure a lasting legacy for the game from RLWC2021.

That has delivered a total of more than £2.35m worth of projects, well on track for the target of generating an additional £10m of investment from the £10m CreatedBy RLWC2021 funding.

Bentley received a Small-Scale Grant of almost £15,000 to cover the cost of improving the playing experience by installing new goalposts, purchase of lawnmower, line marker and fencing, along with some playing equipment for the development of the game.

So far, four large scale grants have been awarded amounting to £698,613 invested in projects costing a total of £1,950,007 – to Chorley Panthers, King Cross in Halifax, Salford City Roosters and Shevington Sharks in Wigan – with more than 40 small scale grants delivering funding from South London Silverbacks to Churchill Community College in North Tyneside.

Ralph Rimmer, the chief executive of the Rugby Football League, said: “Hosting three World Cups in 2021 – the men’s, women’s and wheelchair competitions – is an unprecedented opportunity for Rugby League in this country, and the CreatedBy RLWC2021 Capital Grants Programme is a great example of the benefits it will bring to all sections of the game.

There will be a new rhythm to the Coral Challenge Cup next year, with the traditional Wembley Final being played in July for the first time.

The semi-finals will be played as a double header for the third consecutive year on the weekend of June 6-7, with the quarter finals on the weekend of May 9-10, and the sixth round – when the top eight teams from the 2019 Super League enter the competition, including St Helens – on the weekend of April 4-5. All those three weekends are free of Super League fixtures.