Widnes Vikings: Chief executive James Rule becomes part-owner

Widnes chief executive James Rule has become a part-owner of the Super League club and joined the board of directors.

Rule, who took on the day-to-day running of the club when former chairman Steve O'Connor stepped down in April, arrived in September 2012.

He joins Steve O'Connor, Roddy Snedden, Brian O'Connor and Matt Beech as a major stakeholder.

"When Steve proposed me taking an ownership stake, I didn't hesitate," Rule said.

"I believe we have huge potential and I am excited about playing a part in the realisation of that potential."

His first season as chief executive saw the Vikings finish bottom of Super League on their return to the top tier after seven years away, but an improved performance this year ended with 10th place and a run to the Challenge Cup quarter-finals.

Prior to his appointment at Halton, Rule worked as chief executive at Hull FC before resigning in October 2011.

In December 2011 he was banned for two years for a breach of anti-doping rules, after an investigation found he made false statements regarding Martin Gleeson's positive drugs test earlier in the year.