New Super League grading system won’t be introduced until 2025

THE new Super League grading system is one of the hottest topics of debate in rugby league at present – and why wouldn’t it be?

Since the summer game came into being back in 1996, no changes have felt as widespread as those that could potentially happen in the next few years under new stakeholders IMG.

The digital marketing company signed a 12-year-deal to ‘reimagine’ rugby league after a number of years in the wilderness but the company’s recent plan to give Super League and Championship clubs A and B gradings in March has certainly harvested attention.

Though clubs will be given a grading later in the summer, that grading is basically a mock one for when the actual grading comes into being for the 2025 season.

“The criteria on the 9 March, we go into consultation six weeks later and then we make a decision if we go with that,” Rugby League Commercial managing director Rhodri Jones said.

“The thing that dawned on me, what we’re forgetting is, it is a dry run in the first year. Yes, clubs will have a score on the criteria in June and July 2023, but it doesn’t kick in until the 2025 season.

“So, there is still time for clubs to work hard and to improve their standards both on and off the field to get their first proper grading as opposed to their dummy run grading.

“It provides clubs good leading time to get some good Grade A clubs. There will be Grade A and Grade B clubs in the Super League, that can only be good for the sport if we can strive for the best.”

Though being a Grade A club is the pinnacle, Jones doesn’t want those at the top echelon of the sport to be satisfied with that.

“We want those Grade A clubs to be Grade A star clubs, we don’t want those Grade A clubs to rest on their laurels.