Leeds confirm Catalans fixture is in ‘some doubt’ – with decision likely on Thursday

Leeds Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington has admitted that Friday’s game against Catalans is in ‘some doubt’ – with a decision to be made before the Dragons fly to England on Thursday.

West Yorkshire is one of a number of areas currently being hit by the ‘Beast from the East’, with snow and freezing temperatures engulfing large parts of the country.

Leeds has not escaped those weather conditions, and Hetherington admits it does leave their game – the first back at Headingley since the redevelopment of the stadium began – in doubt.

He told BBC Radio Leeds: “There is some doubt with the heavy fall of snow and freeing temperatures. The pitch will be okay, but it’s all the surrounding areas that are all full of snow.

“Under normal circumstances we’d be able to clear it up, but there’s more snow forecast and more freezing temperatures as well, so it’s currently under review and we’re going to be liaising with the RFL and Catalans Dragons, who are due to come over to England on Thursday. The game on Friday is in some doubt at this moment in time.”

Hetherington admits a decision also has to be made sooner, rather than later, so that the Dragons are given as much time as possible to travel.

He said: “The complications are the fact we’re playing Catalans, and they’ve got to fly on Thursday morning. I’d hope a decision is made before then to make their own plans. Leeds Bradford airport, which is where they’re flying into, is closed.

“We’re confronted with so many challenges, not least the construction challenge. This was going to be our first game at Headingley under the new arrangements.”