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Maurice Lindsay involved in TV Negotiations:
The Wigan Chairman Maurice Lindsay has recently been involved in TV negotiations at the request of the Super League Clubs.
"As my name has now appeared in the media I think that it is important to make clear why I was invited to participate in the talks although it was not a duty I volunteered for or was necessarily keen to do."
"At a meeting of the Super League Clubs, Chaired by Richard Lewis, held at the Belle Vue Wakefield ground on Wednesday 24th September the clubs learned that there was an offer from BBC TV but it fell well below their expectations.
At the same time an earlier offer from B SkyB had not been accepted by the RFL and had in fact been officially withdrawn and taken off the table.There was a desire by the Super League clubs to resume talks with B Sky B and seek another offer from them. That offer would take into account that the Challenge Cup would move to a new summer slot. The clubs asked me to join Richard Lewis and a quick meeting was arranged in London with Vic Wakeling."
"Part of my brief was to persuade B Sky B that the Challenge Cup needed to be revitalised which meant playing it during the summer with a final in August.B Sky B understood our new position but indicated that as their Super League season and coverage would be effected it would lower the value to around ?43 million as he had earlier indicated to the game"
"Following the presentation of our case the offer was subsequently increased to ?48 million. That offer was on the same basis as before which included International matches.This offer was considered by the Super League Clubs at their meeting on Monday night at Huddersfield. As a result B Sky B have been asked to increase that figure in an effort to conclude matters . The Super League clubs are anxious to get a fair increase on the ?45 million they received in the past contract as well as a fair sum to remain with the RFL for International matches."
"BBC will also be expected to pay a fair increase for the fact that the Challenge Cup is moved to run alongside the super League competition as that has created a reduced offer from B Sky B. The Clubs are united in their desire to maintain the value and importance of the Super League as well as maintain their support for International football."