- Rugby League Premiership
The Rugby League Premiership was a competition for British
rugby leagueclubs that operated between 1973 and 1995. As the Super League Premiership the competition continued to operate until 1997.
From 1909 until 1973 (except for the period 1962-64) the
Rugby League Championshiphad utilised a play-off format to determine the overall league champions. For the 1973-74 season the league was split into two divisions, and a play-off system was no longer used. In order to maintain interest towards the end of the season a new competition, the "Club Championship", was introduced to replace the championship play-offs. The Harry Sunderland Trophy, which had until then been awarded to the man-of-the-match in the championship final, would instead be awarded to the man-of-the-match in the premiership final.
The first season saw 16 teams take part: the top 12 of the first division and the top four from the second division. The following season saw the title change to "Premiership", and the format was altered so that only the top eight teams in the first division would compete. A similar competition was later instituted for clubs in the lower league(s). The Premiership continued to be played in this fashion until 1995-96, at the time of the switch to a summer sport, when the competition was abandoned to allow the 1996 Super League season to commence in the spring.
A top-four play-off leading to a final, the Super League Premiership, was instituted as part of the Super League competition. In 1998 this was replaced by a return to a play-off for the championships, with the Harry Sunderland Trophy being the award for the Grand Final's man-of-the-match.
"For completeness, this table includes premiership winners from the Super League era."
Season Winners Score Runners-up 1974-75 Leeds 26-11 St Helens 1975-76 St Helens 15-2 Salford 1976-77 St Helens 32-20 Warrington 1977-78 Bradford Northern 17-8 Widnes 1978-79 Leeds 24-2 Bradford Northern 1979-80 Widnes 19-5 Bradford Northern 1980-81 Hull Kingston Rovers 11-7 Hull 1981-82 Widnes 23-8 Hull 1982-83 Widnes 22-10 Hull 1983-84 Hull Kingston Rovers 18-10 Castleford 1984-85 St Helens 36-16 Hull Kingston Rovers 1985-86 Warrington 38-10 Halifax 1986-87 Wigan 8-0 Warrington 1987-88 Widnes 38-14 St Helens 1988-89 Widnes 18-10 Hull 1989-90 Widnes 28-6 Bradford Northern 1990-91 Hull 14-4 Widnes 1991-92 Wigan 48-16 St Helens 1992-93 St Helens 10-4 Wigan 1993-94 Wigan 24-20 Castleford 1994-95 Wigan 69-24 Leeds 1995-96 "No Competition" 1996 Wigan Warriors 44-14 St Helens 1997 Wigan Warriors 33-20 St Helens
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