The relationship between the Rugby Football League and British-based betting and gambling operator Ladbrokes, is to continue for at least one more year after Ladbrokes agreed to extend its sponsorship deal for the Rugby LeagueChallenge Cup.
The Rugby League Challenge Cup (rugby league knockout club competition) which has been held annually since 1896, will continue to have Ladbrokes as its sponsor. The extension of the sponsorship deal was announced before the Rugby League Challenge Cup Final between serial winners Wigan Warriors (19 titles) and the defending champions Hull FC. The extension will cover the 2018 edition of the Challenge Cup which will also be known as the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup.
It is as a result of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup’s rich culture and anever growing fanbase that made Ladbrokes maintain their cordial working relationship with the Rugby Football League. The Ladbrokes Challenge Cup is widely popular and has been a huge success among fans due to its distinctiveness. It is the only tournament in the UK that features amateur, semi-professional and professional clubs. All in all, the tournament starts with 75 teams which will battle each other till the final two who will compete in the Challenge Cup Final.
Ladbrokes Chief executive Mr. Jim Mullen states that the Ladbrokes brand wants to be associated with prestigious and passionate sporting events hence it was an easy decision for Ladbrokes to continue its relationship with the Rugby Football League. He went on to state that Ladbrokes’ commitment inplaying hard to win also helped them maintain their relationship with the Rugby Football League as they both share the same vision.
By partnering with a growing tournament such as the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup, the brand will be hoping to broaden their market to the rugby sport and gain more customers.
Roger Draper, the Chief Commercial Officer at the Rugby Football League stated that the extension of the Ladbrokes sponsorship package was a timely and welcome development. He states that the extension is great for the sport and shows Ladbrokes’ dedication to home grown sport and tradition. He further mentions that the great relationship between the two must continue to yield positive results and help the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup grow even bigger. Draper went on to say that being associated with a prestigious and successful brand like Ladbrokes will help the tournament to cultivate new fans.
Sky Sports and BBC remain the official broadcasters of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup. The year 2017 has seen these two broadcasters cast a record number of live games.
The extension of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup sponsorship comes at the same time when Ladbrokes also brokered sponsorship packages with English Premier League football clubs, Leicester City Football Club and Burnley Football Club. The barnd has been sponsoring the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup for the past two years since 2015. In 2016, a record number of 76, 235 spectators paid to watch the 115th staging of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup where the final pitted Hull FC against Warrington Wolves.