Championship/League One fixtures: Golden point extra-time arrives, but with a twist

Featherstone Rovers will begin their 2019 Betfred Championship campaign at Batley Bulldogs on February 2, four months after their Grand Final defeat to Toronto Wolfpack.
Featherstone Rovers will begin their 2019 Betfred Championship campaign at Batley Bulldogs on February 2, four months after their Grand Final defeat to Toronto Wolfpack.

DRAWN MATCHES will be decided by golden-point extra-time in the Betfred Championship and League One next season, but with a twist.

Each team will take one point from games which are level after 80 minutes, with a third competition point going to the first side to score during two five-minute periods of extra-time.

Hunslet's South Leeds Stadium.

Hunslet's South Leeds Stadium.

Golden-point made its debut in Super League this year, with two points being taken by the team which scored in extra-time and none for the losing side. That will be unchanged in 2020.

Rugby Football League chief executive Ralph Rimmer said: “The clubs were keen to maintain a one-point reward for teams securing a draw, in addition to providing the possibility of extra excitement in Golden Point extra-time.

“We hope supporters will welcome this innovation.”

Dewsbury Rams will stage the opening fixture in the lower divisions next year when they play host to Leigh Centurions on Friday, January 31.

Batley Bulldogs and Featherstone Rovers are in action two days later in a West Yorkshire derby at Mount Pleasant.

Championship clubs will play on Good Friday, but the second round of the holiday programme has been put back from the traditional Easter Monday date to Wednesday, April 15, at the request of clubs, to give players extra recovery time.

Featherstone Rovers have drawn the short straw with a midweek visit to Toulouse Olympique.

In League One, Hunslet begin their campaign with a derby at Keighley Cougars on Sunday, February 16.

Three of the Parksiders’ 10 home fixtures will be played on Friday evenings, with the rest in their traditional Sunday afternoon slot. Doncaster are set to visit on Friday, June 19 while Rochdale Hornets on July 24 and Keighley Cougars (August 7) complete the Friday action, all kicking off at 7.30pm.

Club spokesman Phil Hodgson said: “The initiative follows positive feedback and requests from sponsors and many supporters to fixtures staged at South Leeds Stadium on Friday nights last season.”

The visit of Newcastle Thunder will be staged on Saturday, May 2 (6pm) because of “availability issues” involving the council-owned stadium.

Rimmer said: “2019 has been a year of significant progress for Betfred Championship and League One, and there’s plenty more to anticipate in 2020.

“While Toronto Wolfpack were clearly big contributors to the substantial increases in attendances and viewing figures in the Championship in 2019, it’s worth noting that 12 of the 14 Championship clubs saw an increase in their average home attendance – as did seven of the 11 clubs in League One.

“The challenge for all of us is to maintain that positive mood around the competition and I know a good proportion of the clubs in the Betfred Championship will start the season with high hopes of securing promotion to the Super League in 2021 – just as all 11 League One clubs will be keen to mount a challenge for promotion to the Championship.”

2019 Fixtures

Batley Bulldogs

FEBRUARY

Sun 2 Featherstone (h) 3pm

Sun 9 Widnes (a) 3pm

Sun 16 Swinton Lions (h) 3pm

MARCH

Sun 1 Sheffield Eagles (h) 3pm

Sat 7 Toulouse (a) 3.30pm

Sun 22 Whitehaven (a) 3pm

Sun 29 Bradford Bulls (h) 3pm

APRIL

Fri 10 Dewsbury (h) 6.30pm

Wed 15 Halifax (a) 7.30pm

Sun 19 Oldham (h) 3pm

Sun 26 London Br (h) 3pm

MAY

Sun 3 Leigh (a) 3pm

Sun 17 York (h) 3pm

Sun 24 Featherstone (a) 3pm

Sat 30 Dewsbury (SB) 3pm

JUNE

Sun 14 Toulouse (h) 3pm

Sun 21 Swinton Lions (a) 3pm

Sun 28 London (a) 3pm

JULY

Sun 5 Widnes Vikings (h) 3pm

Sun 12 Oldham (a) 3pm

Sun 26 Bradford Bulls (a) 3pm

AUGUST

Sun 2 Halifax (h) 3pm

Sun 9 Dewsbury (a) 3pm

Sun 16 Whitehaven (h) 3pm

Fri 21 Sheffield (a) 7.45pm

Sun 30 Leigh (h) 3pm

SEPTEMBER

Sun 6 York (a) 3pm

(SB = Summer Bash)

DEWSBURY RAMS

JANUARY

Fri 31 Leigh (h) 7.30pm

FEBRUARY

Sun 9 Swinton Lions (a) 3pm

Sun 16 Halifax (a) 3pm

MARCH

Sun 1 Widnes (h) 3pm

Sun 8 Oldham (a) 3pm

Sun 22 Toulouse (h) 3pm

Sun 29 Whitehaven (h) 3pm

APRIL

Fri 10 Batley (a) 6.30pm

Wed 15 York (h) 7.30pm

Sun 19 Featherstone (a) 3pm

Sun 26 Bradford Bulls (a) 3pm

MAY

Sun 3 London (h) 3pm

Fri 15 Sheffield (a) 7.45pm

Sun 24 Halifax (h) 3pm

Sat 30 Batley (SB) 3pm

JUNE

Sun 14 Whitehaven (a) 3pm

Sun 21 Bradford Bulls (h) 3pm

Sun 28 Widnes (a) 3pm

JULY

Sun 5 Swinton Lions (h) 3pm

Sun 12 Sheffield (h) 3pm

Sat 25 Toulouse (a) 3.30pm

AUGUST

Sun 2 York City (a) 3pm

Sun 9 Batley Bulldogs (h) 3pm

Sun 16 Oldham (h) 3pm

Sun 23 London (a) 3pm

Sun 30 Featherstone (h) 3pm

SEPTEMBER

Sun 6 Leigh (a) 3pm

(SB = Summer Bash)

FEATHERSTONE ROVERS

February

Sun 2 Batley Bulldogs (a) 3pm

Sun 9 Halifax (h) 3pm

Sun 16 Bradford Bulls (a) 3pm

MARCH

Sun 1 London Broncos (a) 3pm

Sun 8 Swinton Lions (h) 3pm

Sun 22 York City Knights (a) 3pm

Sun 29 Leigh (h) 3pm

APRIL

Fri 10 Sheffield Eagles (h) 3pm

Wed 15 Toulouse Olympique (a) 7.30pm

Sun 19 Dewsbury Rams (h) 3pm

Sun 26 Widnes Vikings (a) 3pm

MAY

Sun 3 Oldham (h) 3pm

Sun 17 Whitehaven (a) 3pm

Sun 24 Batley Bulldogs (h) 3pm

Sat 30 Bradford Bulls (SB) 7.30pm

JUNE

Sun 14 Halifax (a) 3pm

Sun 21 Whitehaven (h) 3pm

Sun 28 York City Knights (h) 3pm

JULY

Sun 5 Oldham (a) 3pm

Sun 12 Widnes Vikings (h) 3pm

Sun 26 Sheffield Eagles (a) 3pm

AUGUST

Sun 2 Leigh Centurions (a) 3pm

Sun 9 Bradford Bulls (h) 3pm

Sun 16 London Broncos (h) 3pm

Sun 23 Swinton Lions (a) 3pm

Sun 30 Dewsbury Rams (a) 3pm

SEPTEMBER

Sat 5 Toulouse Olympique (h) 3pm

(SB = Summer Bash)

HUNSLET

February

Sun 16 Keighley Cougars (a) 3pm

MARCH

Sun 1 West Wales Raiders (a) 3pm

Sun 8 North Wales Crusaders (h) 3pm

Sun 22 London Skolars (h) 3pm

Sun 29 Rochdale Hornets (a) 3pm

APRIL

Fri 10 Doncaster (a) 3pm

Sun 26 Workington Town (h) 3pm

MAY

Sat 2 Newcastle Thunder (h) 6pm

Sun 17 Coventry Bears (a) 3pm

Sun 31 Barrow Raiders (h) 3pm

JUNE

Sun 14 Newcastle Thunder (a) 3pm

Fri 19 Doncaster (h) 7.30pm

Sun 28 Coventry Bears (h) 3pm

JULY

Sat 4 London Skolars (a) 3pm

Fri 24 Rochdale Hornets (h) 7.30pm

AUGUST

Sun 2 Workington Town (a) 3pm

Fri 7 Keighley Cougars (h) 7.30pm

Sun 16 Barrow Raiders (a) 3pm

Sun 23 North Wales Crusaders (a) 2.30pm

SEPTEMBER

Sun 6 West Wales Raiders (h) 3pm