WASPS' proposed move to Sixways now looks in tatters after the RFU withdrew the clubs' licence to play in the English league structure on Thursday evening. 

A statement from the RFU (Rugby Football Union) confirmed that the former Coventry-based club would no longer be able to compete in the Championship next season, saying they would be demoted down to the bottom of the English rugby pyramid (Level 10). 

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The governing body had accepted Wasps' application to play in the second-tier next season earlier this year but, after months of little progress being made, the RFU confirmed all Wasps' supporters' worst fears. 

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"In order to be sure that Wasps were in a position to play in the Championship, the RFU set a deadline for the club to meet the commitments it had made when the licence was first approved and recommit to participating in the Championship in 2023/24," the statement read. 

"These included evidencing payment to Rugby Creditors and putting in place suitable governance structures including a majority independent Board and a process for managing risk. 

"The RFU was also concerned about the lack of progress engaging coaching staff and players.  The club stated that it could not meet these commitments, recommit to participating in the Championship in 2023/24 or engage staff of players until further finance was secured.

"The RFU had worked with the club’s new owners to give the club the best chance of continuing in the league structure and recognises the effort the new owners have put in to try to make this happen.  However, the RFU Board decided that in order to give certainty to other clubs, the licence to continue to play is withdrawn.

"Wasps will now move to the bottom of the playing pyramid and certainty can now be provided to the Championship clubs over the season structure for 23/24." 

But what does this mean for the owners at Sixways? Earlier this month, Wasps had officially applied to the RFU to use Sixways as their home ground for next season. 

In the aftermath of that news, information on Companies House revealed that Atlas had taken out a debenture loan - a loan agreement in writing between a borrower and a lender that is registered at Companies House - held by Loxwood Holdings.

Loxwood Holdings is Christopher Holland's company, the man who is the director of the company that brought Wasps out of administration. That loan has been reported to be in the region of £1 million. 

But now they will have to drop to level 10, it seems unfeasible that Wasps will make the move from Coventry, leaving Sixways, potentially, with just Worcester Warriors Women and non-league football team Worcester Raiders as tenants. 

Wasps would, reportedly, have been paying around £600k a season to rent out Sixways, so Atlas now stand miss out on that valuable income, that they will now need to find from elsewhere.

But if they cannot bring Worcester Warriors men's team back to life, questions will be asked as to how they can keep the business afloat.