Salford’s lack of an Academy means they are at an advantage compared to many of their fellow Super League sides during the current Covid chaos, according to a rival coach.
Wakefield’s Chris Chester, whose club’s home meeting tonight (Monday) with the Red Devils has been called off because of ongoing Covid issues affecting Richard Marshall’s squad, argues that clubs without development systems are benefitting from postponements as they are not required to field younger players in order to fulfil fixtures.
Chester has been frustrated by the call-off of two matches against Salford, who closed down their Academy four years ago amid cost-cutting measures and have had four games in total postponed due to Covid cases and the need for others to isolate (the home clash with Hull KR on Thursday (July 29) was also affected).
The first Wakefield game, due to be on July 1 but called off, subsequently took place on July 16, with Salford winning 24-14.
Chester is concerned there could be another rearrangement and said: “I will be disappointed if we are asked to play a midweek game through no fault of our own.
“Twice, we have had games called off against Salford. The first one, what happened was inexcusable but that is for a later day.
“We have another game that gets called off and then we could be expected to play a midweek game between a Sunday and a Sunday game or a Friday and a Sunday game.
“We are getting punished and, for me, the teams that don’t run an Academy system are benefitting from what is happening.
“I just find it mind-blowing at times. I am sick to death of clubs like ours getting punished, or what feels like a punishment, for other clubs not being able to fulfil a fixture list.”
Salford, who have played 14 Super League matches, are due to visit Wigan in round 18 on Friday.
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