South West Rugby League
|South West Men's League|
|Current season or competition:
2013 South West Rugby League season
|Sport||Rugby league football|
|Formerly known as||Rugby League Conference South West division|
|Number of teams||6|
|Holders||Devon Sharks (2013)|
|Related competition||Rugby League Conference|
The SWRL is a semi-autonomous league with a six member committee under an RFL appointed chairman. The SWRL has six member clubs from Devon, Somerset and Cornwall.
The conference made the leap from 30 to 52 teams in 2003 and a South West Division appeared for the first time. It disappeared in 2004 as South West teams took part in the Western Division and Cardiff Demons joined the newly created Welsh Division.
The Premier divisions saw a change in boundaries leaving the North Premier division covering a larger area to give the English Midlands clubs their own premier division without having to face heartland teams, this left the West Midlands division with too few teams to run, resulting in a merged West Midlands and South West Division.
After a campaign by the RFL to form new clubs in the South West, a new South West division was created in 2007 for teams from the West Country. By 2010, there were enough teams to have a South West conference split into two pools.
For the 2011 season, there was a new RLC West of England alongside the RLC South West. The initial idea was that the two leagues would compete side by side with play-offs at the end of the season to decide an overall South West champion. In 2011, Gloucestershire Warriors defeated Somerset Vikings in the Championship play-off. In 2012, the intended play-off match was cancelled as the majority of the Devon Sharks team, the South West Champions, were unable to break off from the start of the rugby union season to fulfill the fixture.
The South Western Rugby League was formed in February 2013 to organise and administer the South West Men's League following the switch of the majority of community clubs in England to a summer season and the ending of the Rugby League Conference in 2011.
Rugby League Conference Pyramid
This is officially the highest tier 4 league that South West clubs can play in.
2013 South West Men's League
|Cornish Rebels||2013||Redruth, Cornwall|
|Devon Sharks||2006||Torquay, Devon||RLC South West: 2009, 2012, 2013|
|Exeter Centurions||2007||Exeter, Devon|
|North Devon Raiders||2009||Barnstaple, Devon|
|Plymouth Titans||1985||Plymouth, Devon||RLC South West: 2007, 2011|
|Somerset Vikings A||2003||North Petherton, Somerset||RLC Western: 2004 RLC South West: 2011|
South West Cup
The South West cup is a knock-out competition played for by members of the South West Division. It was originally known as the Devon Cup.
- 2006: East Devon Eagles (as Devon Cup)
- 2007: East Devon Eagles (as Devon Cup)
- 2008: Plymouth Titans (as Devon Cup)
- 2009: East Devon Eagles
- 2010: Devon Sharks
- 2011: Plymouth Titans
- 2012: Exeter Centurions
- 2013: Cornish Rebels
South West Nines
The South West Nines is a rugby league nines competition. It is competed for by RLC South West and RLC West of England teams and local student rugby league sides.
- 2007 Plymouth Titans
- 2008 Exeter University
- 2009 Exeter University
- 2010 Exeter University
- 2011 Exeter University
- 2012 Plymouth Titans
- 2013 Exeter University
In 2010, a ″one–off″ match was played between Devon and Cornwall with Devon winning 44–20. The match was featured on the BBC national news and was widely covered by the rugby league press. It is now competed for annually and known as the Martin Roddy MBE Trophy.
- 2010 Devon
- 2011 Devon
- 2012 Cornwall
South West County Championship Festival
The first South West County Championship took place on the May Bank Holiday weekend in 2011 at Aretians RFC in Bristol. The 2012 Event took place at Bridgwater RFC in Somerset.
- 2011 Hampshire
- 2012 Hampshire
Participating teams by season
- 2003: Bristol Sonics, Cardiff Demons, Gloucestershire Warriors, Oxford Cavaliers, Somerset Vikings, Worcestershire Saints
- 2005: Bristol Sonics, Gloucestershire Warriors, Oxford Cavaliers, Plymouth, Somerset Vikings, Thames Valley
- 2007: Devon Sharks, East Devon Eagles, Exeter Centurions, Plymouth Titans, Somerset Vikings 'A'
- 2008: Devon Sharks, East Devon Eagles, Exeter Centurions, Plymouth Titans, Somerset Vikings
- 2009: Devon Sharks, East Devon Eagles, Exeter Centurions, Plymouth Titans, Somerset Vikings, South Dorset Giants
- 2010: Devon Sharks, East Devon Eagles, Exeter Centurions, North Devon Raiders, Plymouth Titans, Somerset Vikings, South Dorset Giants, South Somerset Warriors
- 2011: Devon Sharks, East Devon Eagles, Exeter Centurions, North Devon Raiders, Plymouth Titans, Somerset Vikings, South Dorset Giants, (South Somerset Warriors withdrew mid-season)
- 2012: Devon Sharks, Exeter Centurions, Exmouth Saints (failed to complete the season), North Devon Raiders, Plymouth Titans
- 2013: Cornish Rebels, Devon Sharks, Exeter Centurions, North Devon Raiders, Plymouth Titans, Somerset Vikings A
- 2003 Cardiff Demons
- 2005 Gloucestershire Warriors
- 2007 Plymouth Titans
- 2008 East Devon Eagles
- 2009 Devon Sharks
- 2010 East Devon Eagles
- 2011 Somerset Vikings
- 2012 Devon Sharks
- 2013 Devon Sharks
- "Devon face rivals Cornwall in historic match". BBC. Retrieved 27 May 2013.