BULLS' Championship rivals London Broncos have been left reeling after they were handed an automatic defeat by the RFL yesterday.

Toulouse Olympique have been awarded a 24-0 win after London decided not to travel to France for next weekend's Championship fixture.

London will be referred to the RFL Compliance Department for off-field misconduct, with the charge being failure to fulfill a fixture. This could lead to a fine or even a points deduction.

The RFL ruled in March that the match should go ahead as planned, despite the change in UK government quarantine restrictions affecting France, on the basis that the Broncos are full-time.

The governing body's decision means that Toulouse are now deemed to have played two league games in 2021 and London one.

Clubs are required to have played in 70 per cent of their scheduled fixtures to be eligible for the top six play-offs at the end of the season.

London are not happy with the RFL's ruling on the Toulouse fixture, with chairman David Hughes saying: “The RFL made the decision that our club should travel to France on the basis of being full-time and that our competitors who are playing for the same prize of promotion to Super League for the 2022 season do not have to travel due to being part-time.

“We feel this doesn’t create a level playing field within our competition and brings into question of the integrity of the competition if we are having to adhere to different criteria.

“At a meeting held in early March we made our feelings known about what was being asked of us, which was supported by other clubs in the competition, yet the RFL still insisted on us travelling.”

He added: “We fully appreciate that the quarantine rules the Government have set out will impact part-time players on return as they have employment outside of rugby league but feel that shouldn’t be a barrier to them travelling to France if this is planned with their employers in advance of the game.

“While our players and staff are full-time, the quarantine will still have an effect on their personal lives in different ways to part-time players.

“Under the current Government guidelines, anyone returning from France needs to self-isolate for 10 days but can release after five days following a negative PCR test.

“This would mean part-time players would only need to request four days off from their employer in the 2021 season, which we don’t think would be an unreasonable request.”

London also confirmed they had offered to reverse the fixture with Toulouse, which would have resulted in them giving up the gate receipts from the home game in August.