CFL announces it and XFL have jointly halted talks

CFL balls are photographed at the Winnipeg Blue Bombers stadium in Winnipeg Thursday, May 24, 2018. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods)

The CFL says partnership talks with the XFL have been jointly halted.

In March, the CFL and XFL announced they were poised to begin serious talks about a potential partnership.

Neither side said who initiated talks first, only that they'd agreed to collaborating on ways to grow football.

"Our talks with the XFL, exploring the potential for collaboration and innovation, have been positive and constructive," CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie said in a statement Wednesday. "While we remain open to finding new ways to work together in the future, we and our XFL counterparts have jointly decided to not pursue any formal arrangements at this time.

"We at the CFL are now squarely focused on preparing for August 5th and the start of our 2021 regular season, which will culminate Dec. 12 with the playing of the 108th Grey Cup in Hamilton. We are looking forward to this year and a bright future for our league."

The CFL didn't play in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It's scheduled to begin a 14-game campaign Aug. 5.

Training camps are slated to open Saturday.

There was no immediate comment from the XFL.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 7, 2021.