Rotherham face liquidation

Rotherham, who were relegated from the Premiership at the end of last season, face extinction unless they can find new backers by Friday. With debts of £1.5m - £400,000 of which is in unpaid VAT - the South Yorkshire club will go into voluntary liquidation unless a major investor comes forward within the next few days.

With the Rugby Football Union (RFU) ruling against a buy-out by the South African millionaire Johann Rupert and a move to London, time is running out for Rotherham, who have appointed the Australian Ross Reynolds as coach and signed 10 new players. But at two hours' notice they called off a pre-season friendly with Ulster at Sheffield's Don Valley Stadium last Friday, and withdrew from Saturday's Middlesex Sevens.

Rotherham were on the brink of taking legal action against England Rugby Ltd, who control the Premiership, but who allowed Worcester's promotion to stand.

It was to be Rotherham's case that they should not have been relegated, so guaranteeing their £1.8m funding for the forthcoming season.

At an emergency meeting yesterday it was clear that - even with the benefit of a parachute payment of £700,000 - the club's position was untenable.

The major creditor is Mike Yarlett, who has been with Rotherham for over 30 years and took the RFU to the High Court five years ago when it reduced the size of the Premiership from 14 clubs to 12. He lost the case at a personal cost of £300,000 and is now unprepared to continue his financial support.

* Jonny Wilkinson will make his long-awaited comeback from injury tonight against Connacht in Newcastle's pre-season friendly in Galway.

BUY RUGBY WORLD CUP TICKETS

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test
Tour de France 2015: Twins Simon and Adam Yates have a mountain to climb during Tour of duty

Twins have a mountain to climb during Tour of duty

Yates brothers will target the steepest sections in bid to win a stage in France
John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
Forget little green men - aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert

Forget little green men

Leading evolutionary biologist says aliens will look like humans
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy