Rugby League and cricket in unique double bill

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The Independent Online

Headingley is to stage rugby league and cricket at the same time on a unique double bill at the end of the month.

Leeds Rhinos have been drawn at home to Wigan in the quarter-finals of the Carnegie Challenge Cup and are to play the tie on 31 May at 2.30p.m.

That will be midway through the second day of the Roses battle between Yorkshire and Lancashire, but the Rhinos believe the two sports can co-operate well enough to spare them the possibility of having to move to a neutral venue.

“We are all know how special and unique Headingley is and days like this prove how true that is,” said the Rhinos’ chief executive, Gary Hetherington.

“There will be logistical challenges that we will have to overcome, but there is a willingness from all parties to make both matches a success.”

Yorkshire’s chief executive, Stewart Regan, said: “We are pleased to have reached an agreement with Leeds Rhinos that both matches can be played at home on this occasion.”

The BBC’s second tie of the weekend will be at Odsal the following day, where Bradford meet Hull, who this week escaped expulsion from the competition for twice fielding an ineligible player.

Huddersfield have made a major signing for next season in Wests-Tigers’ State of Origin full-back, Brett Hodgson.

The 30-year-old, six times capped by New South Wales, is coming to the Galpharm on a two-year contract. The Giants have struggled at full-back this season, with neither Chris Thorman nor Rod Jensen looking convincing in the role.

Bradford have extended the contract of their former Castleford, Wigan and Hull hooker, Wayne Godwin, for another three seasons. Castleford’s Craig Huby has also agreed a new three-year deal.

Brian Noble has told his Wigan team that the test of their response to their humiliation by St Helens in Cardiff will not be the 106 points they put past Whitehaven on Monday, but how they perform against Warrington tonight.

Despite scoring five tries on his debut, Sam Tomkins is replaced by Thomas Leuluai, while the Wolves have Martin Gleeson fit again and the former Wigan hooker, Jon Clarke, back after suspension.

Supporters buying a Wigan lottery ticket this week have been making a contribution to the RL Benevolent Fund, in memory of Mike Gregory, who played for Warrington and coached Wigan.

Leeds have Brent Webb, Eric Anselme, Ryan Bailey and Ali Lauitiiti back against Wakefield in tonight’s other match. The Wildcats are without the injured Adam Watene, but have Ricky Bibey back from his ban.