In a press release sent out to media today, the Toronto Wolfpack have announced that they will not continue with the 2020 season when games return to the UK in August.
“Toronto Wolfpack can confirm that the club has informed both Super League Europe (SLE) and the Rugby Football League (RFL) that the team will not be restarting the campaign as scheduled on August 2nd. The Wolfpack will not participate in the conclusion of the 2020 Betfred Super League season, or in the remainder of the 2020 Coral Challenge Cup. This decision has not been taken lightly, and in consideration of a range of factors specific to the club as the only transatlantic team in the league.”
The announcement goes on to list several factors for the decision including COVID-19 and the fact that they are the only transatlantic team. Due to COVID-19, and the resulting cancellation of all 11 home games in Toronto, the team has seen financial struggles stemming from no ticket sales, loss of sponsorships, lowered merchandise sales and loss of game day related revenue streams. Also, in order to complete the rest of the season of games in the UK, the Toronto Wolfpack would have to cover costs for COVID-19 testing, stadium rentals, medical costs and player pay increases to align with the rest of the league.
They also announced that player and staff payroll will be guaranteed by Toronto Wolfpack majority owner David Argyle and has been secured by a personal guarantee to the RFL. Those looking for refunds for all 2020 single game tickets, as well as season memberships that have been requested by individual fans, will be returned by the club to Ticketmaster in the near future in order for the refund process to be fulfilled.
As it was announced that there will be no relegation this year, the Toronto Wolfpack look to field a team in 2021, taking on Super League once again.