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RFL confirm investigation into Widnes Vikings report over noose image

Widnes Vikings

The RFL have confirmed that they are investigating a report made by Championship side Widnes Vikings after an image of one of their players with a noose around his neck emerged.

Nick Gregson took to X, formerly Twitter, last night to comment after Widnes Vikings’ 24-12 loss to Swinton Lions with his statement being captioned as a “post regarding Swinton coach Alan Kilshaw”.

In that post, Gregson would allege that Kilshaw encouraged his players to target his shoulder, which the player had suffered problems with during his time at Swinton last season, in a purported bid to “target” and “bully him”.

The phrase “bully him” captioned an attached image of Gregson’s headshot that had a noose photoshopped around his neck in a disgusting manner that’s not reflective of the values of any sport, not least rugby league.

Following the 28-year-old’s post, his club Widnes Vikings published a statement of support confirming that they had contacted the RFL before Swinton then responded to the allegations too.

Serious About Rugby League can now confirm that the RFL have started an investigation into the situation on the back of Widnes’ reports, something that both clubs have been informed of.

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Widnes Vikings player subject of vile image

If the image shared by Nick Gregson isn’t bad enough, he also revealed that Alan Kilshaw’s alleged tactic and campaign to “bully him” and target his bad shoulder worked as Gregson revealed that it had popped out and he was “probably done for the 2024 season now”.

His club, Widnes Vikings, were swift with their support as they posted their statement confirming the fact that they’d reported the alleged targeting and the image to the RFL.

The club posted: “Widnes Vikings can confirm that following information on social media tonight regarding Nick Gregson, we have made a formal complaint to the RFL, who have acknowledged it and are launching a full investigation.

“The club is 100% behind Nick and is offering him whatever support he needs. In view of the now ongoing investigation, the club will be making no further comment.”

Understandably, the incident has drawn plenty of eyes with Gregson’s initial post having been viewed over 490,000 times on X alone.

Among those to react to the allegations were Super League players such as Chris Atkin and Oliver Gildart, whilst former players Richie Mathers and Paul Cooke have also reacted with disgust.

Widnes Vikings’ assistant coach Thomas Wood was one of those to share Gregson’s statement as they assessed the poor loss but explained that this was “bigger than rugby league and quite frankly disgusting”.

It awaits to be seen how long the RFL’s investigation will be and at what point findings will be confirmed.

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