YORK City Knights have declined the invitation to play in the RFL's proposed Autumn competition.

At present, only four clubs have stated their interest in playing in the competition which is open to sides in both the Betfred Championship and Betfred League 1 following the cancellation of their seasons amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

A York City Knights statement explained the decision.

It read: "After receiving full details of the competition and learning the criteria in which the club would need to meet, a decision has been made that it would be in the club’s best interests to not enter.

"The decision was taken with the input of both performance and finance areas of the club with the importance of a full pre-season program and welfare of the players alongside our commitment to be better on and off the field.

"Our focus has now switched to the 2021 Betfred Championship – our maiden season in the brand new LNER Community Stadium," they added.