Yates' view: Adams appointment giving game plenty of publicity so RFL must capitalise

Stuart Pearce - a big RL fan - watching Castleford take on Warrington
Stuart Pearce - a big RL fan - watching Castleford take on Warrington
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Tony Adams' impending appointment as the next president of the Rugby Football League is already having a effect on the profile of the 13-a-side code.

The former Arsenal and England captain, who has become closely linked to the game’s welfare programmes through the Sporting Chance charity he founded in 2000, will succeed the current president, Andy Burnham, next summer,

And within hours it had been a hot topic of discussion on Sky TV through its The Debate hour-long show and Radio 5 Live..

People, who have little knowledge of Rugby League, may have been surprised by Adams's planned involvement in the sport but not former England colleague Stuart Pearce - a self-confessed Warrington Wolves fan and a regular spectator at the Halliwell Jones Stadium and other Super League grounds.

Psycho, as he is nicknamed appeared on both stations, putting forward his ]forthright views on Tony's role and like clubs, fans and journalists in this part of the country also took the opportunity to blast the coverage of the sport by southern-based newspapers, insisting: ''Rugby League is a great game. If Tony can help the sport in any way shape or form with his name and his profile, and everything he stands for, I think it will be a great boost for the 13-a-side code,”

Craig Bellamy, who also appeared on The Debate Live, backed his old rival to the hilt and being a Welshman possessed more than a fair share of knowledge of both codes of rugby to express an authoritative view..

Now it is up to the RL to capitalise fully on this much welcomed publicity at a time when I believe the sport has a massive opportunity to spread its wings on both the domestic and international scene.

A few years ago if anyone had suggested club teams would emerge in such far-away places as Canada and Serbia, they would have been described as stark raving bonkers - but this is now reality.

Add the growing number of countries playing on the world stage to the list and I believe Rugby League is now in a better position than ever to raise its profile on a global scale.

And finally I would suggest that the powers-that-be at Red Hall take steps to air their views on the apparent lack of coverage given to the sport by calling for a meeting with the top brass at our London-based media, if they haven't already done so.

It's time to take the bull by the horns.