After the original proposal for IMG’s grading criteria, amendments were made to it.
It was then confirmed that IMG will introduce minimum standards as part of their grading criteria.
This will see Grade A clubs have to have a Women’s team or they will face a sanction.
Sanctions will be given for a failure to meet the minimum standards and could include the likes of salary cap deductions.
Speaking yesterday, the RFL’s CEO Tony Sutton explained:
“The sanction initially would be a grading points deduction for the first year of breach, the second would be an increased deduction and the third would be a downgrade of the grade otherwise achieved.
“That’s the sanction for none-compliance of minimum standards but the minimum standard by definition has got some flexibility in it.
“On a different point, if it’s relevant for a Grade B side in their local area to have a women’s team of a certain level, then that’s the beauty of having a bespoke talent and pathways plan in that either on the community or the talent side then there’s an overall delivery of the women’s game in line with the RFL’s road map.
“The minimum standards breach is something that’s pretty high, we’re not looking for a net to catch marginal breaches. The aim is for serious breaches, ones that potentially bring reputational damage to the league, the competition or the club. It’s that level that would bring a grading point sanction.”