Rugby league clubs have voted by a two-thirds majority to scrap the Super 8s and return to a conventional promotion and relegation system from 2019.
The decision was reached at a Rugby Football League (RFL) extraordinary general meeting in Manchester.
The Super 8s were introduced in 2015 and saw the top two tiers split into three groups at the end of each season to decide promotion and relegation.
However, a “one up, one down” system will be back in place from next season.
The Super 8s will be replaced by loop fixtures and a five-team play-off to decide the Grand Finalists and eventual champions.
Confirmation of the new structure brings to an end several months of battling amongst clubs, with 11 of the 12 current Super League teams – all except Leeds Rhinos – said to be in support of the proposals.
Top clubs cited poor crowds during the Super 8s as clear proof the format was unpopular with the paying public, while issues with
However, Rhinos were backed up by many clubs from the Championship and League One, who feared a loss of power and money.
“I think it’s very positive for rugby league,” said Wigan chairman Ian Lenagan, who was a leading figure in the Super League clubs’ drive for change.
More to follow.