Rugby League: Broncos may touch down in Midlands if Cup goes to plan

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THE GAME has the chance to break new ground if the London Broncos beat Hull KR in their Challenge Cup quarter- final next weekend.

A semi-final between London and northern opposition would raise the possibility of taking a major club match to the Midlands for the first time.

Northampton has already staged matches in the Emerging Nations' World Cup in 1995 and the football club there is keen to host one of Super League's "on the road" games in July as well as a home international later in the year. Leicester is another area where there has been considerable interest.

London have never reached a semi-final, so the question of a neutral venue has never arisen.

"We still have to beat Hull KR, but if we do, we are resigned to not playing our semi-final in London, where the cost of renting an alternative ground would be prohibitive," said a club spokesman.

The club would welcome a venue in the Midlands. Failing that, they would prefer to play in Lancashire. The League is considering the matter in advance, but is sure to favour the venue where it believes the match would attract the biggest gate.

London's second row, Steele Retchless, is now expected to be fit for the tie against Rovers after initial fears that he had broken a finger in the victory over Halifax in the last round.

Julia Lee is to become the first woman to referee a Varsity match at Richmond next Tuesday.