Rams play waiting game

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DEWSBURY Rams are waiting ahead of two decisions which will determine which division they will play in next season.

The Rams are hoping things may become a little clearer after today’s Rugby Football League (RFL) meeting to decide whether Crusaders will be admitted to either of the Co-operative Championships.

The Wrexham-based club, who opted to leave Super League, have provided separate applications for each division and a decision on those looks set to be made sometime this afternoon.

Dewsbury, who finished the season second-bottom, are hoping Crusaders will be placed in Championship One, which could help give them a reprieve from relegation.

However, they would still be left waiting on the outcome of a RFL investigation into a series of breaches of rules Barrow are alleged to have made over a four-year period between 2007 and 2011. The investigation has been ongoing for over two months and if Barrow are found guilty, could face an unlimited fine or points deduction.

Barrow have already been docked six points for offences earlier this season, so relegation could be a possibility.

Rams chairman Mark Sawyer remains confident the club will not be demoted but the delay in announcing the make up of next year’s championships if having an effect on Dewsbury’s playing personnel.

Keegan Hirst is the latest player to leave the Rams. He became one of John Kear’s first signings for Batley and could make his first appearance for the Bulldogs in the Boxing Day Challenge match at Tetley’s Stadium.

James Lockwood, who picked up the team players’ player of the year, first team player of the year and the forward of the year awards at the club’s recent presentation evening, has join Grand Finalists Featherstone Rovers while Scott Turner has signed for Sheffield Eagles.

Mr Sawyer said: “The delay in making an announcement is costing us players as we are like sitting ducks.

“Clubs are offering our players deals but setting a deadline for them to make a decision, which comes before the RFL decide which division we will be in.

“Some of our players have said they are keen to stay but that depends on which division we are in.”

One of those players is understood to be second row Rob Spicer, who has had a number of offers but wishes to stay at Dewsbury. Spicer spent time out injured having suffered a broken leg in Dewsbury’s game at Sheffield in May but he returned for the latter part of the campaign and was one of the Rams stand-out players and they will be keen to keep hold of him.