Elstone defends Toronto decision

Robert Elstone has defended the decision to not readmit Toronto Wolfpack.

The Super League chief executive has been heavily criticised for his part in ensuring the Wolfpack would not return.

Elstone was part of a panel that wrote a scathing document on the prospects of the Wolfpack and the club’s prospective owner Carlo LiVolsi slammed his handling of the process.

Ultimately, seven Super League clubs, as well as the Super League executive, voted against the Wolfpack.

“The Toronto episode was based on a poor decision at the outset,” he insisted.

“A business model that was given to them that wasn’t sustainable and some decisions along the way that in hindsight weren’t the right ones. Most fundamentally it was hit hard by Covid.

“But I don’t think any of those things were of Super League’s making. Super League were dealt that hand and dealt with it really professionally, competently and fairly.

“I don’t think we could have done anything differently, we gave that club three months to prepare, we helped them prepare and it still fell a long way short.”

Elstone dismissed claims that they had not shown enough support to the club during the process.

“In the run-up to the restart we were holding their hands and being supportive on any number of issues we could,” he said.

“Once they gave notice of their standing down, we went back into dialogue to give them advice on what they needed to do to get back into the competition. It’s Toronto’s executive team’s obligation to ensure its players and coaches are updated on the process, not Super League’s. I would be convinced that we were accessible, open and help to Toronto and its management team prior to them standing down, and equally through the submission process.”

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