Rhinos won't seek world title - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Rhinos won't seek world title

By Valkerie Baynes 22/04/2010 10:11:10 PM Comments (0)

Leeds Rhinos won't ask to be awarded rugby league's World Club Challenge title after champions Melbourne Storm were stripped of their NRL premierships for salary cap breaches.

Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington said the scandal elevated the achievements of his English Super League club, who lost to the Storm at Elland Road in February.

"Melbourne Storm have been the dominant force in the NRL over the past five years and it is clear to see why now," Hetherington said.

"I think if anything it actually elevates the achievements of our players. In 2008 we managed to beat Melbourne and this year we pushed them all the way."

The teams met to contest the match between the Super League and NRL champions in 2008 and this year after Melbourne won the 2007 and 2009 premierships.

On Thursday, the Storm were stripped of their NRL titles, plus three minor premierships, fined $500,000 and forced to repay $1.1 million in prize-money after being found guilty of long-term salary cap breaches.

But NRL chief executive David Gallop said neither losing grand finalists Manly or Parramatta would assume the titles of 2007 and 2009.

Hetherington took a similar view of the WCC, but he expected the Rugby Football League (RFL) to make a decision regarding the STG50,000 ($A83,167) prize-money Melbourne took from the match.

"I have noticed the punishment in Australia has seen Melbourne stripped of their titles in their domestic competition but those titles have not been awarded to the teams that they beat and I think that is correct," he said.

"Trophies are earned on the day of the game and we would not look to seek the awarding of the world title after the event.

"However, Melbourne have also been stripped of the prize-money they obtained during the period in which they were found guilty and I am sure this is something that the RFL will be looking into."

An RFL spokesman said: "The RFL are aware of the situation involving Melbourne Storm, the NRL and the salary cap. The RFL board of directors will decide our position in due course."

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