Widnes Vikings bought out of administration

Former Wigan and now Widnes star Anthony Gelling
Former Wigan and now Widnes star Anthony Gelling
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Widnes Vikings have been bought out of administration according to reports tonight.

Several Wiganers and ex-Warriors working at the Championship club had been affected after an initial takeover collapsed two weeks ago.

Ex-Warriors stars Anthony Gelling and Harrison Hansen are in the senior squad. Player Sam Wilde, coach Kieron Purtill and a number of youth players and employees are from the borough.

A £100,000 fund-raising effort had kept the club afloat in the interim after the administrator described the situation as "drastic".

The crisis at the financially-crippled Championship club took a new twist last Thursday when they postponed Sunday's fixture with Sheffield Eagles and 24 hours later they officially went into administration.

This weekend's game against Featherstone Rovers is now expected to go ahead.

Ian Clark from the Widnes Independent Supporters Society fans group told BBC Radio Merseyside: "I'm absolutely over the moon.

"It's our club, we've fought all week, all the fundraising activities going on. It's been humbling and it's amazing there's an end product, saving us from the threat of liquidation."

And the Press Association are also reporting that a local consortium has headed up the buy-out.

Administrator Peter O'Hara confirmed that a deal has been struck.

"We have concluded an agreement which will be ratified tomorrow when the legal work is completed," O'Hara told the Press Association who also say the takeover is subject to approval from the governing body, who will need to carry out a fit and proper person's test on the new owners and also decide on any sanctions.

And they added that it seems certain that the club will be handed a 12-point deduction under the RFL's insolvency rules, which apply once a club is taken over and the membership of the league awarded to the new owners.