The National Lottery has decided to enter the Rugby Football League and the Women’s and Girls’ Rugby League as an official partner.
The collaboration is part of the lottery’s dedication to assisting athletics, especially women’s sports, in dealing with the pandemic’s impact.
The National Lottery will be recognised across a variety of branding around the sport’s premier men’s and women’s fixtures as part of the deal. On June 25, the lottery will be the official sponsor of the England Women’s Rugby League Mid-Season International against Wales.
Opportunity to win tickets
Lottery winners will have the opportunity to win tickets to big matches as well as the Mid-Season International, plus VIP tickets. The funding for these projects comes from a National Lottery advertising budget, not from money put aside for National Lottery Good Causes or from Camelot UK.
Camelot UK’s CEO, Nigel Railton, said: “Every day, the National Lottery and its players make a huge difference to communities across the UK – and have been doing so since 1994.
“Supporting sports has always been part of the mission of the National Lottery and this inventive partnership will undoubtedly make a difference. The loss of spectators and cancellation of events has had such an impact, so I am proud that National Lottery players are able to support Rugby League after a difficult year.”
With a number of sporting collaborations, including Wheelchair Tennis, Rugby Union Sevens, and non-league football across the four nations, the National Lottery has played an important role in promoting sport across the UK since the pandemic. About £150 million in lottery money has already been allocated to youth sporting organisations all over the country.
The Rugby Football League’s CEO, Ralph Rimmer, stated: “The growth of girls’ and women’s Rugby League at all levels has been wonderful, which made the impact of over a year of not playing so hard for the players, coaches, volunteers and clubs.
“But we bounce back with this new commercial partnership and with the support of the National Lottery, and we look forward to kicking off our vibrant domestic competitions, followed by a mid-season International, and the excitement of a home World Cup this autumn. Our thanks to the National Lottery who share our vision and understand that Rugby League changes the lives of the girls and women involved.”
Getting crowds back at matches
Minister for Sport Nigel Huddleston added: “We’ve been clear that we must continue the push for greater participation, employment, commercial opportunities and visibility in the media for women’s sport. This announcement is great news for Women’s and Girls’ Rugby League.
“As we look ahead to the start of the 2021 professional season, this funding from the National Lottery will provide the sport with certainty as we work towards getting crowds back at matches as soon as possible.”