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BBC Sport's Dave Woods
"Widnes' promotion will be welcomed"
 real 14k

Widnes chairman Tony Chambers
"Promotion-relegation should be the lifeblood of any sport"
 real 14k

Wednesday, 8 August, 2001, 06:39 GMT 07:39 UK
Vikings get Super League spot
Widnes have earned their place in the top flight
Widnes Vikings, this year's Northern Ford Premiership Grand Final winners, will be promoted to the Tetley's Super League for the 2002 season.

The decision was recommended after a meeting of the Independent Franchise Panel in Leeds on Tuesday morning and then ratified by the Rugby Football League's Board of Directors hours later.

The Vikings become the first side to go up from the Premiership since Wakefield Trinity Wildcats were promoted in 1998.

Chris Caisley, the RFL vice-chairman and chairman of Super League Europe Limited, said: "It's great to have Widnes back in the top flight and I'm sure that they will kick on to further success from here.

We're delighted to be heading back into the sport's elite
  Tony Chambers
Widnes chairman
"They are an enterprising club who should prove inspiration to clubs with Super League ambitions and a new face that will keep the Tetley's Super League competition fresh and vibrant".

It was music to the ears of Widnes Vikings chairman Tony Chambers, who saw his side beat Oldham 24-14 in the NFP Grand Final over a week ago.

"We're delighted to be heading back into the sport's elite. Six years away from that level of the sport has been a long time for a club with our traditions," said Chambers

"I'm delighted for the fans, the club, the town and Halton Borough Council who have been our partners in guiding the club through the financial crisis ad rebuilding completely during the last six years."

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See also:

06 Aug 01 |  Rugby League
Rugby league plans new cup comp
26 Jul 01 |  Rugby League
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28 Jul 01 |  Rugby League
Widnes claim Grand Final win
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