SO many hurdles have already been jumped in order for a Challenge Cup Final to take place this Saturday.

In these unprecedented times, would a replacement team be needed should Leeds Rhinos or Salford Red Devils be unfortunately and cruelly struck by Covid-19 ahead of Saturday's showdown behind closed doors at Wembley?

When sides have been unable to fulfil Super League fixtures recently due to the impact on their squad of coronavirus and the track and trace system, the 11th club without a contest that round due to Toronto Wolfpack's withdrawal from the competition has stepped into the breach.

With current holders Warrington Wolves being the narrowest losers in the semi-finals, their 24-22 defeat to Salford comparing to Wigan's 26-12 loss against Leeds, would they be asked to step up in order for the showcase event being televised live by the BBC to go ahead on Saturday as scheduled?

It seems certain, though, that such an unfortunate situation would bring a postponement of the cup final rather than asking a defeated semi-finalist to jump on board instead.

The Rugby Football League and its partners have gone to remarkable lengths already to ensure the prestigious competition reaches a conclusion in 2020, as it has done since the 1939-40 season was impacted by the outbreak of World War Two.

This year's competition has taken significant hits due to Covid-19, including a long delay and a redraw at the end of July for the sixth round following Toronto's withdrawal and the five remaining clubs from outside of Super League not wishing to continue after their league campaigns had been put on hold since March and then cancelled.

This year's final had originally been scheduled for July 18, three months ago.

All ties since rugby league's restart at the beginning of August have had to be played behind closed doors.

This would have all been inconceivable when planning the 2020 competition, but despite the lengths taken to overcome the obstacles it is beyond current thinking that a semi-finalist would be given a second bite of the cherry should disaster strike.

Current information is that Leeds and Salford are all systems go for what is an eagerly awaited 119th final - and the 78th at Wembley - for an expected huge TV audience on Saturday, kick-off 3pm.

The build-up will start at 1.45pm on BBC1.