The Rugby Football League held their board meeting on Monday and it is usual for the chairman to circulate the minutes of the meeting for clubs to gain a record of the topics discussed.

However, all the clubs received a personal invite for the chairman to personally address, via video conferencing, all clubs with such important topics on the agenda.

For the Championship and League One clubs we have been left hanging for some time, with no clear plan on a return to action. After our last meeting at the end of June the clubs had been asked for a range of opinions on whether it was viable to restart.

As I have said before, Barrow Raiders were firmly in the camp of wanting a restart, behind closed doors to begin with if necessary, in order to give enough time to complete the season.

However, we understood that this would prove problematic for a number of clubs who perhaps didn’t have the resources to create income from advertising and streaming opportunities and would face costs to stage the games that were beyond them.

I have been calling for a roadmap, a bit like what we have received from Government with the easing of lockdown, and to be fair to the RFL that is pretty much what they have delivered.

We are disappointed that there is no firm start date but now a line in the sand has been drawn and there will be a decision as to whether a season with integrity can take place on or before July 23.

There is a round of the Challenge Cup scheduled for the back end of August and this would give the competing teams from the Championship still in the competition enough time to prepare. The proposal is that the league campaign resumes the week after that.

However, this comes with a big proviso. There is not enough appetite from the lower league clubs to play behind closed doors, so this has been taken off the table as an option.

Behind the scenes, there has been some hard lobbying of Government that there is a return to sport with crowds.

The RFL are trying to persuade the Government that rugby league can act as a guinea pig to see if social distancing at sports grounds is practical. I don’t see any issues spacing people out when they are watching the game, especially when virtually all rugby league capacities are much larger than attendances.

When I say the capacity, I mean the actual capacity as opposed to that imposed by Health and Safety Regulations.

Due to our lack of suitable crush barriers and exits, our current capacity is under 6,000, but we all know that there have been much bigger attendances in the past. Socially distancing a couple of thousand fans should not present problems but we may need to insist on staggered entry and exit times.

If, in the next two weeks, the lobbying to Government has not produced a positive result then I fear that the season in the proposed format with promotion and relegation could be lost.

If we are waiting, to as late as September or October, for crowds to return, then there is broad agreement that we may have an alternate cup competition that could at least provide fans, sponsors, players and coaches some action to enjoy.