The title win of St Helens was a great spectacle, but this season’s real legacy could be securing the sport’s long-term future

The final seconds of the Super League Grand Final will forever be one of the most memorable moments in rugby league history, however, the legacy of 2020 and this season’s long-term impact on the sport will go far deeper

It was arguably the most dramatic grand finale in history, and perhaps it was only right that a season that had lingered for so long all summer should be settled with such fine margins as the Saints clinched two titles in a row when Jack Welsby was the quickest to respond to Tommy Makinson’s drop goal and hit a post with the score Wigan had to admit defeat after the full-time hooter sounded in Hull on Friday night

It was the culmination of a season that had to end. It can be forgotten sometimes, but rugby league is not a cash-rich sport, just a $ 16 million government loan GBP at the beginning of the year prevented many clubs from going out of business

Even the biggest clubs like St Helens and Wigan would not have been immune to financial ruin if the Super League had not come to an outcome that would have meant a failure to meet broadcasting obligations and a huge financial black hole

“This season has been associated with a significant financial loss,” says competition director Robert Elstone. “Financially, it was the most challenging year in our history as a sport. All predictions for 2020 were blurred and we had to end this season

“There was no alternative. The other result was not worth thinking about. We will look back on a season in the years to come that has preserved the sport for years to come”

All the more impressive is the incredible spectacle on Friday The Super League has weathered structural changes and the withdrawal of Toronto Wolfpack, and has made significant wage cuts for players since the competition was suspended in March, which could last until 2021

Elstone is negotiating a new broadcasting deal with Sky Sports that will determine the long-term future of the sport – a deal that is below the current 40 million GBP per year is considered close The challenge now builds on the relative success of 2020 A World Cup in England next year makes 2021 the most important year in the sport’s recent history, having somehow survived that season

“We hope the TV ratings are high for the finale and we’re working very hard to get the best deal possible,” says Elstone of Covid was built all year round At first we thought we would close for two weeks, then a month, then it became a question of whether we could finish

“But we fell down as a sport, what we had to do The final was the game of your life We had news from colleagues in other sports full of amazement and praise and we lived up to one of the most famous events in the country The challenge for us is now in moving forward, and although we choose 2020 as significant, we cannot let it define us ”

Elstone hopes fans will return by the start of next season in mid-March as the sport begins to reverse the financial ramifications of a pandemic that threatened to put the game at risk, and the Super League ended up doing what she wanted to achieve in 2020: She finished the season by all means. Now the game has to plan a year that, if everything goes according to plan, will be even more significant than this

Super League Grand Final

World news – AU – Grand Final like no other is just part of the dramatic story of the Super League 2020