KEIGHLEY Cougars have been drawn to face the London Broncos in the First Round of this season’s Betfred Challenge Cup.

The tie will take place over the weekend of the 20/21 March, with the winning then playing host to the winner of the clash between Sheffield Eagles and York City Knights the following weekend (27/28 March) in the Second Roumd.

As one of the only three Betfred League One clubs entered into this season’s competition, the odds were always going to be stacked against the Cougars and the draw has not been kind with providing full-time opposition for Rhys Lovegrove and his side.

In what will be the Cougars first competitive fixture for 378 days, it will also mark the first meeting between the two clubs since the spring of 1995.

Phil Larder’s side swept aside the Broncos 38-4 at Cougar Park in the play-offs as they marched towards Second Division Premiership glory at Old Trafford.

This came just weeks before the side from the capital were controversially promoted to Super League instead of Keighley, who had earned a place in the top flight on the field prior to the formation of the summer era’s premier competition.

The club will confirm the date, kick-off time, and venue, for this tie in due course once the details have been agreed and finalised with the Broncos and the Rugby Football League.


Featherstone Rovers v Bradford Bulls
Halifax Panthers v Batley Bulldogs
London Broncos v Keighley Cougars
Oldham RL v Barrow Raiders
Sheffield Eagles v York City Knights
Swinton Lions v Newcastle Thunder
West Wales Raiders v Widnes Vikings
Whitehaven v Dewsbury Rams


Featherstone Rovers/Bradford Bulls v Halifax Panthers/Batley Bulldogs
London Broncos/Keighley Cougars v Sheffield Eagles/York City Knights
Swinton Lions/Newcastle Thunder v Oldham RL/Barrow Raiders
West Wales Raiders/Widnes Vikings v Whitehaven/Dewsbury Rams

By Joshua Chapman