Challenge Cup draw: when you can watch it, what time and on what TV/stream channel with Wigan Warriors and St Helens representatives

THE draws for the early rounds of both the Betfred Men’s and Women’s Challenge Cups will be broadcast live from Wembley Stadium this Thursday – which is 12 January – at 6pm on BBC iPlayer and BBC Sport online.

Joining presenter Tanya Arnold for the draws will be head coach Matty Peet and England’s Kai Pearce-Paul from Men’s cup holders Wigan Warriors, and Eboni Partington from Women’s cup holders St Helens.

This year the finals of both competitions will be staged at Wembley – an historic double header on Saturday 12 August – although the format for Thursday’s draw will be different for each.

The Men’s competition follows a straight knock-out format, with ties for rounds one and two being drawn on Thursday, while the 16-team Women’s competition begins with a group stage to determine the quarter finalists.

36 teams from the community game will enter the Men’s competition at Round One (11/12 February), including each of the three Armed Forces sides, six teams from the Southern Conference League, and one each from Wales, Scotland and Ireland.

The teams competing in the 18 Round One ties will then go forward into the Round Two draw, alongside 10 teams from Betfred League One and 10 more from the Impact Performance National Conference League Premier Division. Round Two ties will take place on 25/26 February.

The Betfred Women’s Challenge Cup features 12 teams from the Betfred Women’s Super League, plus Championship sides Oulton Raidettes and Hull KR, and Cardiff Demons and London Broncos from the Betfred Women’s Super League South. Those 16 teams will be drawn into four groups of four, with matches beginning on 23 April.

Leeds Rhinos, St Helens, Wigan Warriors and York Valkyrie will be seeded into groups 1, 2, 3 and 4 respectively, with the draw deciding which of the remaining 12 teams they will face.