Challenge Cup set to resume for Castleford Tigers, Wakefield Trinity and Featherstone Rovers in August

The Challenge Cup is set to resume in August with the final of the competition now scheduled for October.
The Challenge Cup is returning in 2020. Picture: Chris Mangnall/ Challenge Cup is returning in 2020. Picture: Chris Mangnall/
The Challenge Cup is returning in 2020. Picture: Chris Mangnall/

Wakefield Trinity were drawn against Featherstone Rovers in the sixth round before rugby league was shutdown by the coronavirus outbreak while Castleford Tigers were handed an away draw at York City Knights.

The sixth round ties are due to be played on August 22 and 23, with a double header broadcast on the BBC welcoming the competition back.

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From the John Smith's Stadium in Huddersfield, holders Warrington Wolves will face Wigan Warriors before St Helens tackle Salford Red Devils.

The quarter finals have been rescheduled for the weekend of September 19-20 while the two semi finals will be played on October 3.

The final, which was originally due to be played this weekend, will follow two weeks later on October 17 with a 3pm kick off and will be broadcast live on BBC One.

Venues for all other fixtures, including the 2020 Coral Challenge Cup Final, have still to be confirmed although the RFL have provisionally booked Wembley Stadium for October 17.

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Full details of the sixth round will be confirmed by the end of July, following a deadline for the five Betfred Championship and League 1 clubs remaining in the competition to inform the RFL whether they feel able to continue.

Rovers CEO Davide Longo has previously stated it would be difficult for Featherstone to make an appearance in the competition if their Championship campaign was cancelled, with a decision due on that on July 23.

Mark Foster, the RFL’s Chief Commercial Officer, said: “We are delighted to be able to confirm the place of the Coral Challenge Cup in the revised schedule for the 2020 Rugby League season, including Saturday October 17 as the new date for the Final.

“This should have been the sport’s annual weekend at Wembley. We recognised some time ago that a July final would not be possible, but it’s fantastic that we are now able to announce the return of this year’s competition - and it’s exciting to start with a double header live on the BBC.

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“We have all seen the record audiences they have achieved for their Premier League football coverage in recent weeks, so this is a real opportunity to showcase the best of our sport.

“It is also fitting that the double header will take place in Huddersfield as we celebrate 125 Years of Rugby League almost to the day, and that famous meeting at The George Hotel at the end of August in 1895.

“We are grateful for the support of Coral, the BBC and the clubs in ensuring that the competition will maintain its place in the British sporting calendar. There has been a Challenge Cup Final every year since 1940, which was the only year without a Final since the five years between 1915 and 1920 because of the First World War.

“We will confirm the outstanding details, including the venue for the 2020 Coral Challenge Cup Final, as soon as possible – and we are grateful to those supporters who bought tickets for the original date in July for appreciating the unique circumstances which mean ongoing uncertainty.

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“With increased optimism about the return of crowds to professional sport in the autumn we are still working through all venue options for all remaining rounds, to be able to react to any changes to the Government guidance over the coming weeks and months - and should the best option be to host the Final at Wembley Stadium we do have it provisionally booked for October 17.”