Doncaster Knights have ‘no objections’ to Leeds Carnegie’s ‘Yorkshire’ name change

Doncaster Knights chief executive David Ryall. Picture: Liz Mockler
Doncaster Knights chief executive David Ryall. Picture: Liz Mockler

Doncaster Knights say they have no objections to Leeds Carnegie’s proposed name change to Yorkshire Carnegie.

The controversial re-branding - announced earlier this week and to take effect from next season - has sparked a mixed reaction among rugby fans across the county.

But Knights chief executive David Ryall, who held “positive discussions” with his Leeds counterparts about the change, says his club does not a problem with it.

In a short statement, Ryall said: “We met with Leeds Carnegie who asked if we had any objections to them changing their name to Yorkshire Carnegie and we did not.”

Leeds hope the name change - the brainchild of Leeds’ executive chairman Sir Ian McGeechan - will broaden appeal across the county, open new revenue streams and pave the way for them to become a Premiership powerhouse.

The Headingley club also insist their long-term vision should not detract from the ambitions of other clubs in the county.

“This is about professionalising the system, not taking anything away from other clubs but saying can we integrate, and can we have a real development programme that has a top professional club in the Premiership that every talented Yorkshire player can aspire to,” said McGeechan.

Gary Hetherington, Leeds rugby’s chief executive said: “Leeds Carnegie, Rotherham and Doncaster have all tried to create a winning team on the field to gain and retain a place in the Premiership.

“Clearly, by leveraging talent and support across Yorkshire that gives us the best chance possible of succeeding.”