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Million Pound Game officially scrapped as part of Championship restructure

IMG scrap Million Pound Game

The Million Pound Game has been responsible for some of Super League’s most dramatic moments in recent years. In 2016, Gaz O’Brien’s dramatic drop goal secured promotion for the Salford Red Devils against Hull KR. In 2018, London Broncos overcame Toronto Wolfpack in a tense 4-2 victory.

The Million Pound game moniker was replaced by the Championship Grand Final in 2022, with the game still responsible for determining promotion to Super League. In 2023, London Broncos again secured promotion by defeating Toulouse Olympique in the end of season showpiece.

However, due to the IMG reforms of the Rugby League pyramid, promotion will no longer be determined by winning this game. Instead, the IMG grading system will determine the 12 sides which make up Super League. In the absence of promition, the RFL are looking for new ways to enhance the competitive nature of the Championship and League One play-offs.

RFL confirm play-offs no longer sole driver of promotion

London Broncos promoted in last-ever Million Pound Game. The concept has been scrapped by IMG.

London Broncos were promoted to Super League last season. Credit: Imago Images

Speaking in an RFL media briefing held today, RFL CEO Tony Sutton confirmed that a new strategy would be put in place to revitalise the play-offs. This would include the awarding of 0.25 performance ranking points to the winner of the Championship Grand Final.

“We are starting and ongoing with a strategy to enhance both the Championship Grand Final and the League One Final as stand-alone events.” Sutton said.

“Particularly for the Championship Grand Final it is no longer the million-pound game and the sole driver of promotion.”

IMG plan to enhance prize money

Sutton confirmed that the RFL has a strategy in place to ensure these games remain competitive. This also includes a plan to increase the prize money for clubs taking part in the Championship and League One Grand Finals.

“And that is via three ways really, the grading bonus points that I have already touched on and mentioned, a significant level of prize money for both the Championship Grand Final and the League One Final to enhance it as a stand-alone event, and the trophy lift, as has always happened in the past, and the celebration of winning that competition.”

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. John R

    May 3, 2024 at 5:15 pm

    Gareth O’Brien’s drop goal did NOT secure promotion for Salford. Both teams were in the Super League. The losers were relegated to the Championship, so Salford could not be promoted to the Super League – they were already in it.

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