Rugby league: Crusaders fans to launch new club, and you can choose the name

CRUSADERS fans have just 24 hours left to vote for a name for their new club.

At a meeting of fans organised by the Crusaders Supporters Club and Save the Cru, they unanimously agreed to enter a team into Championship One – two levels below Super League.

Despite being invited to apply by the Rugby Football League, the club must still have its application approved by the RFL before its future in next season’s competition is secure.

At the meeting fans agreed that ‘Crusaders’ should remain as part of the new club’s identity. Fans can visit and vote on whether to call the club Glyndwr Crusaders, Cambrian Crusaders or North Wales Crusaders.

The deadline for online votes is 11am tomorrow (Friday).

About 120 Crusaders supporters attended the meeting at the Racecourse in Wrexham, as well as Wales Rugby League President Mike Nicholas and Chris Thair from the Club Support department of the RFL.

It looks likely the club’s home venue will remain the Racecourse as the supporters club believes the current club’s deal with Glyndwr University remains valid.

A failed rival bid to form a club called Glyndwr Chargers had no support from the university despite initial fears.

Fans also heard that a number of coaches have already been in touch to apply for the head coaching role and Geoff Moss and Ian Roberts are no longer involved in the club.

Instead the new outfit will be partially owned by a Supporters Trust as well as a number of individuals and organisations throughout the area.

“There is a long way to go but we are hopeful that the new club will launch in a similar vein to Rochdale and Hunslet who are doing well with having no single owner, which is where Crusaders and others have failed in the past,” said Jamie Thomas, leader of the Save the Cru campaign group.

“We will be looking to canvas investment in the Crusaders in the form of shares or bonds, but on the basis that no-one will able to exert overall control due to their level of investment.

“Ownership needs to be diverse to avoid the issues of the past recurring. The aim is to prevent people buying up shares and taking control, placing us back into the strife that we are hoping to emerge from.”

North Wales Crusaders under 18s, who have just completed their first season in the Conference Youth League, will officially become part of the club as their under 18 side.

Some of the older and more experienced players are likely to become squad members of the new side.

If the club’s membership of Championship One is confirmed, one of their rivals will be Neath-based South Wales Scorpions, creating the first professional Welsh rugby league derby in almost 102 years.