Some of Sheffield Eagles play-off rivals are expected to be formally charged by the RFL today with breaking dual registration rules and could face a points deduction.
Batley Bulldogs, Doncaster and Dewsbury have been under investigation by the governing body but not all are expected to face charges. It has been alleged that the trio fielded players on dual registrations loans from Super League clubs who did not meet the criteria to appear in games after the transfer deadline.
Batley played Jacob Fairbank, whose parent club is Huddersfield Giants, at Owlerton on July27 – two days after the deadline. Fairbank scored the final try in a 28-18 win for the Bulldogs.
In the same round of Championship games Ben Crooks (Hull FC) appeared for Doncaster at Keighley and Sam Wood (Bradford Bulls) for Dewsbury Rams at home to Barrow Raiders. Championship clubs are not allowed to field players on dual reg who have not played three matches for them in the season before the registration deadline (25 July). There can be exceptions if a player has a salary cap value of less that £20,000 or had been out injured.
It is understood that one or more will be charged today.
Any case would be heard by an independent tribunal. Sanctions can include a fine and/or having league points deducted.
That could affect the final placings and who makes the top eight and the playoffs with the Eagles, Batley and Dewsbury in a mid-table group separated by only four points.
Eagles with five games to play are home to Swinton Lions on Sunday.