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Rugby league: Minus four points but Crusaders survive

CRUSADERS RL have been docked four points before the start of the 2011 Engage Super League campaign for their financial problems in the close-season.

The club, which switched its base from Neath in South Wales to Wrexham’s Racecourse Ground after it was purchased by millionaire businessman Geoff Moss, found itself in trouble due to monies owed to the taxman and other creditors by the old company.

As a result they went into administration this autumn and have been negotiating their Super League future ever since.

The RFL and Super League have now approved their membership for 2011 and by next week Crusaders should be out of administration following those talks.

Crusaders’ Ian Roberts believes the club can look forward to the new season now the matter has been dealt with.

“While we are disappointed with the points deduction, this is fantastic news for the club, the town and the future of rugby league in North Wales,” he said.

“We were always committed to the club and to the future of rugby league in North Wales and we are determined to build on last season’s success.

“There is still a lot of hard work to be done off the field, but we believe this now gives the club a fresh start.”

Crusaders chief executive Rod Findlay added: “We believe head coach Iestyn Harris and the squad can turn the points deduction around and hit the ground running next season.

“There is a tremendous appetite for rugby league here in North Wales and we can now look toward the future.

“A conclusion to the administration process is imminent and now we can focus on the future and make sure the club secures its Super League status for many years to come.”

Crusaders’ Jarrod Sammut has been nominated for the Rugby League Express Best Overseas Newcomer award.

Teammate Rhys Hanbury and former Crusader Weller Hauraki, who has signed for Leeds Rhinos, are in the running for Super League Team of the Year.