Clubs told to upgrade stadiums

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The Independent Online

Five Super League clubs who have failed to make progress towards new grounds or improving their existing facilities have been warned by the Rugby Football League that they could lose their places in the competition.

St Helens, Castleford, Wakefield, Salford and the Celtic Crusaders all received letters yesterday telling them that their stadiums will count against them when licences for 2012 are allocated in two years' time.

Saints are not thought to have a serious problem and Crusaders may well move from Bridgend, but the other three clubs are effectively being put on notice that they could be out. Widnes, whose ground meets all Super League criteria, qualified to apply by winning the Northern Rail Cup final 10 days ago.

"It was appropriate to remind all the clubs concerned of their commitment to upgrade their current facility or move to a new stadium," said the RFL's director of development, Gary Tasker.

St Helens' Paul Wellens has been ruled out for a month with a broken bone in his hand. He is expected to miss the Challenge Cup semi-final against Huddersfield on 9 August, as is James Roby, who also has a fracture to his hand.