RFU approves Wasps return to Championship but declines Worcester application

Wasps will take their place in the Championship next season
Wasps will take their place in the Championship next season

As a big blow to Worcester Warriors' chances of returning to professional rugby next season as their takeover by Atlas Worcester Warriors RFC Limited was rejected by the Rugby Football Union.

The bid for Worcester takeover came from a company that had ex-Worcester Warriors chief executive Jim O'Toole and former London Irish forward James Sandford as founding directors but the negotiations failed and they are now looking for alternate bids.

"The bidders, selected by the administrators of the insolvent WRFC Trading Limited, have informed us that they are not prepared to meet these conditions, and therefore the RFU board was unable to approve their application," a statement continued.

"The RFU will now work with the administrator to enable alternative bids that would secure professional rugby at Sixways and to work together in a timetable to enable that to happen."

Meanwhile, Wasps have been given a lifeline after the bid from HALO22 Limited that consists of members from the club legends list was approved for the takeover.

"The RFU Board concluded that the application for Wasps was approved subject to a number of specific conditions being met and that it would continue to work with the bidders through the satisfaction of those conditions over the coming weeks.

"These include a range of financial commitments to ensure that the club remains funded, the lodging of a significant bond, the regular provision of financial and other information, swift payment of rugby creditors, and corporate governance requirements including relating to the club's board of directors and risk management process."

Both Wasps and Worcester were first suspended and then relegated from the Premiership in October after they entered into administration due to financial crisis.