Rugby Football League Championship
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (March 2010)|
- Not to be confused with the current Rugby League Championship, currently known as the Kingstone Press Championship due to sponsorship by Kingstone Press Cider.
|Other club(s) from||France|
|Number of teams||12|
|Level on pyramid||1|
|Relegation to||Second Division|
|Domestic cup(s)||Challenge Cup|
|International cup(s)||World Club Series|
|TV partners||Sky Sports|
|Super League XXI|
The Rugby Football League Championship was the major professional competition organised by the Rugby Football League in Great Britain. In 1996 it was superseded by the Super League and the Rugby League National Leagues. Winning Super League is still regarded as winning the championship, hence for completeness this article includes championships from the Super League era.
The first season of rugby league (1895–96) saw all the breakaway clubs play in a single league competition. The addition of new teams and the problems of travelling led to the league being split in two for the following season; into the Yorkshire League and the Lancashire League. This arrangement lasted until the 1901–02 season, when the top clubs from each league resigned and formed a single new competition. The following season the remaining clubs in the Yorkshire and Lancashire Leagues were re-organised to form a second division.
In 1905–06 the two divisions were re-combined into a single competition. Clubs played all the teams in their own county on a home-and-away basis, results counting towards the re-formed Yorkshire and Lancashire Leagues. They also organised inter-county fixtures on an individual basis; all results were collated into a single table for the Championship. In order to even up the competition a top-four play-off series was used to determine the Championship.
Apart from the interventions of the two world wars, this system was retained until the 1962–63 season, when the league briefly returned to a two divisional system. This lasted only two years, and in the 1964–65 season they returned to one large division subdivided into county leagues. The play-offs were expanded to the top 16 teams and the Harry Sunderland Trophy was introduced as the man-of-the-match award for the decider.
1970–1995: Premiership and reintroducing Second Division
In the 1973–74 season they once again went back to two divisions. The play-off and the Yorkshire and Lancashire League were abandoned, and a new play-off type competition, the Premiership, was introduced however the team finishing top of the Championship were crowned champions. During this period in the late 89s and 1990s Wigan dominated both the Championship and Challenge Cup.
1996–present: Super League
|1||Wigan||20||1908/09, 1921/22, 1925/26, 1933/34, 1945/46, 1946/47, 1949/50, 1951/52, 1959/60, 1986/87, 1989/90, 1990/91, 1991/92, 1992/93, 1993/94, 1994/95, 1995/96, 1998, 2010, 2013|
|2||St. Helens||13||1931/32, 1952/53, 1958/59, 1965/66, 1969/70, 1970/71, 1974/75, 1996, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2006, 2014|
|3||Leeds||10||1960/61, 1968/69, 1971/72, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2015|
|4||Huddersfield||7||1911/12, 1912/13, 1914/15, 1928/29, 1929/30, 1948/49, 1961/62|
|5||Swinton||6||1926/27, 1927/28, 1930/31, 1934/35, 1962/63, 1963/64|
|6||Salford ||6||1913/14, 1932/33, 1936/37, 1938/39, 1973/74, 1975/76|
|7||Hull F.C.||6||1919/20, 1920/21, 1935/36, 1955/56, 1957/58, 1982/83|
|8||Bradford||6||1979/80, 1980/81, 1997, 2001, 2003, 2005|
|9||Hull KR||5||1922/23, 1924/25, 1978/79, 1983/84, 1984/85|
|10||Oldham||4||1904/05, 1909/10, 1910/11, 1956/57|
|11||Halifax||4||1902/03, 1906/07, 1964/65, 1985/86|
|12||Warrington||3||1947/48, 1953/54, 1954/55|
|13||Widnes||3||1977/78, 1987/88, 1988/89|
Note. In the event of a tie, the team that won x amount of titles first is given preference.
Active English RFL Championship droughts
Teams in bold currently compete in the Super League. Titles prior to 1947 include the number of years it was won prior to World War II, and titles won prior to 1919, includes the number of years it was won prior to World War I.
|89||Batley Bulldogs||1923-24||RFL Championship|
|75||Hunslet Hawks||1937-38||RFL Championship|
|62||Workington Town||1950-51||RFL Championship|
|59||Warrington Wolves||1954-55||RFL Championship|
|57||Oldham Roughyeds||1956-57||RFL Championship|
|54||Huddersfield Giants||1961-62||RFL Championship|
|52||Swinton Lions||1963-64||RFL Championship|
|49||Wakefield Trinity Wildcats||1967-68||RFL Championship|
|44||Dewsbury Rams||1972-73||RFL Championship|
|41||Salford Red Devils||1975-76||RFL Championship|
|40||Featherstone Rovers||1976-77||RFL Championship|
|35||Leigh Centurions||1981-82||RFL Championship|
|34||Hull F.C.||1982-83||RFL Championship|
|32||Hull KR||1984-85||RFL Championship|
|31||Halifax RLFC||1985-86||RFL Championship|
|27||Widnes Vikings||1989-90||RFL Championship|
|10||Bradford Bulls||2005||Super League|
|2||Wigan Warriors||2013||Super League|
|1||St Helens RFC||2014||Super League|
|0||Leeds Rhinos||2015||Super League|
Titles won by region
|Region||Number of titles||Clubs|
|| Wigan (20), St Helens (13), Salford (6),
Swinton (6), Oldham (4), Leigh (2),
Broughton Rangers (1)
|| Leeds (10), Huddersfield (7), Bradford (6),
Hull F.C. (6), Hull KR (5), Halifax (4), Hunslet (2),
Wakefield Trinity (2), Bradford F.C. (1), Batley (1),
Dewsbury (1), Featherstone Rovers (1),
Manningham F.C. (1)
||Warrington (3), Widnes (3)|
||Workington Town (1)|
- Rugby League Premiership
- Rugby Football League Championship Second Division
- Rugby Football League Championship Third Division
- Super League
- Kingstone Press Championship
- All Four Cups
- "Salford Red Devils: Official Club Website". Salford Red Devils. Retrieved 13 June 2012.