AS many as 45,000 spectators could be allowed in to watch York City Knights take on Featherstone Rovers in their 1895 Cup final at Wembley next month.

The double-header of the 1895 Cup final and that of the Challenge Cup on July 17 will be a part of the Government's Events Research Programme, which explores ways to attend a range of events safely as lockdown restrictions ease.

Exact crowd-number limits are yet to be finalised but Mark Foster of the Rugby Football League has said they could be as much as half of the 90,000-capacity national stadium.

He added that fans will likely have to present proof of either full vaccination or negative Covid tests.

Chief commercial officer Foster said: “We are still working through the full details, and have further work to do in the next 24 hours with the Events Research Programme as well as Wembley Stadium and Brent Council, but the indications are that we will be working to a 50 per cent capacity, which is around 40,000 to 45,000.

“This is fantastic news for the sport as a whole, and especially for the tens of thousands of supporters of Castleford Tigers, St Helens, Featherstone Rovers and York City Knights, who will now be able to attend Rugby League Challenge Cup final day - one of the country’s traditional sporting highlights.

“We would like to place on record our thanks to all at DCMS, Public Health England, Wembley Stadium and Brent Council who have helped to get us to this stage.

“We fully expect that a form of Covid certification will be required for all who attend on the day. This will consist of either having had both doses of the vaccine at least 14 days before the event, or proof of a negative Lateral Flow Test, which can be taken at home or at a recognised centre free of charge, within 48 hours of the event.”