A home fifth round tie against the Sheffield Eagles awaited the winners of a Sunday evening fourth round game between the Swinton Lions and Oldham as the Championship met Championship One, two sides who have recruited well over the close season and whose sides contained vastly experienced players.
It was the League One side who were the favourites with the bookies, despite travelling to Heywood Road in Sale for the game, and it was the home side had a six-point start on the coupon.
The Sean Long factor, and his recruitment of a strong side, meant that it was his side who were expected to make progress into the fifth round.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 25th Feb 2024 7:46 PM
The draw for the fifth round of the 2024 Betfred Challenge Cup took place live on BBC Radio Leeds as presenter Mark Deighton and Paul Anderson presided over the nine sides remaining in the competition ahead of four ties to be played in a fortnight’s time to see who would join the twelve Super League sides in the sixth-round draw.
With Swinton Lions and Oldham still to play in the six o'clock kick-off, seven sides were confirmed as through after Saturday and Sunday’s games including the community side York Acorn who beat Watch Brow on Saturday.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 25th Feb 2024 4:57 PM
Two sides with opening round defeats had a Sunday afternoon encounter to complete the round two fixtures as the Salford Red Devils were visited by the Castleford Tigers with the home side hot favourites for the win after running the Leeds Rhinos close last weekend.
Salford had Joe Shorrocks in for an injured Oliver Partington while the Tigers had an unchanged starting thirteen from the side which lost heavily to the Wigan Warriors in the opening round.
The Tigers were given a twelve-point start on the handicap coupon, very few people could see beyond a Salford win.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 25th Feb 2024 4:52 PM
A couple of decades ago this would have been a worthy Challenge Cup Final, but in 2024 it was a round four clash to determine who would move forwards into the four-game round five and a chance to take on a Super League side as Bradford hosted Widnes in an all-Championship affair.
The two sides have never actually met in a Challenge Cup Final although they did meet twice in the Championship in 2023 with honours being shared at a win apiece, but Widnes exited the competition at this stage last year at the hands of Dewsbury, Bradford progressing to round five where they lost to Halifax.
The Bulls were favourites for the win with the Vikings having been given a fourteen-point start on the handicap coupon.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 25th Feb 2024 2:15 PM
The eagerly anticipated clash between the northern and southern hemispheres took place at a packed DW Stadium as the Wigan Warriors played hosts to the NRL Champions the Penrith Panthers who were keen to avenge last years loss to St Helens and set the record straight.
The bookies had given the Australians a six-point handicap on the coupon and most pundits were calling the game in favour of the Panthers, but Wigan were quietly confident that a partisan crowd and home advantage could bring them home with a historic win, their first since they beat Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks in 2017 and their fifth World Club Challenge win.
The ‘Best Club Side in the World’ title was up for grabs, and both sides desperately wanted it.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 24th Feb 2024 9:57 PM
The top of Super League beckoned for either the Huddersfield Giants or St Helens as the two sides met at the John Smiths Stadium for a round two encounter which was the prelude for many to the World Club Challenge match between Wigan and Penrith which would take place later in the evening.
With Jake Connor sidelined due to concussion protocols, Tui Lolohea stepped into the Giants full-back spot while the visitors were without the services of Konrad Hurrell, and Waqa Blake after last week’s comfortable win over London Broncos.
St Helens were the favourites for the win with the Giants having been given a ten-point start on the handicap coupon but this early in the season it was a bit of a guessing game.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 24th Feb 2024 7:16 PM
Two sides looking for their first win of the 2024 season met in round two at the Halliwell-Jones Stadium as Sam Burgess’s Warrington Wolves took on Tony Smith’s Hull FC for a place in the top half of the table.
FC made a host of changes to their line-up, some forced by suspensions, some by injury and others tactical while the hosts were without Lindop, Williams (injured) and Crowther (suspended) with Stefan Ratchford only being brought back into the side as eighteenth man.
The bookies made their minds up on the winner ahead of kick off with the home side rated as massive odds-on favourites, Hull FC being given a twenty-point start on the handicap coupon.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 23rd Feb 2024 9:52 PM
After a perfect start to the season, humiliating their arch enemies from across the city, Hull Kingston Rovers welcomed the Leeds Rhinos to Craven Park for the opening match of round two of Super League XXIX, hoping for another clean sheet but happy to settle for a win and the important two points.
The only change to the starting thirteen for the home side was the promotion of George King and the selection of Corey Hall to the bench in place of Matt Parcell (suspended) while Leeds had Justin Sangare in for Oledzki (shoulder), Bentley stepping off the bench into the starting line-up in place of Donaldson and Alfie Edgell for Lachlan Miller who was taken ill on the coach.
The home side were the favourites for the win, the Rhinos given a six-point start on the handicap coupon as the bookies believed that Mikey Lewis would again turn on the style and the Rhinos would struggle on the road.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Thu 22nd Feb 2024 9:48 PM
Mark Twain once said, “The reports of my death appear to be much exaggerated”, and while the critics and doom mongers again heralded the demise of our great game in 2024 it appears from the opening week of Super League that their fears have so far been somewhat misplaced.
Without doubt the Super League XXIX was always going to be a 'little different' with SKY committing to cover all of the matches with some games being broadcast simultaneously, while Super League had its own new streaming service and some games would be shown live to a national audience free to air on the BBC.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Mon 19th Feb 2024 2:55 PM
The draws for the quarter finals and semi-finals of the 1895 Cup took place immediately after the final hooter of this afternoons matches which concluded the opening round robin league format in the overhauled structure for 2024.
Swinton and Barrow were already in the final eight and were joined today by Bradford Bulls, Sheffield Eagles, Wakefield Trinity, York RLFC Knights, Batley Bulldogs and Oldham.
The quarter final ties will be played on the weekend of the 3rd March 2024 for a place in the semi-finals which will be held on the 12th May.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 18th Feb 2024 4:56 PM
With several of the places in the quarter finals of the 1895 Cup already decided on the results of the opening two rounds, one game which demanded interest was the derby encounter between the Keighley Cougars and the Bradford Bulls with the winners progressing in the competition while the losers would be eliminated.
Both sides had already defeated the Dewsbury Rams earlier in the competition, but it was the Championship side the Bradford Bulls who were the clear favourites to take the win against last season’s relegated Keighley side.
Barrow Raiders and Swinton Lions both had a rest weekend but were safe in the knowledge that they were already in the quarterfinals and one of the teams with a BD postcode would be joining them at the end of today’s game.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 18th Feb 2024 4:44 PM
It was a round one baptism of fire for Sam Burgess’s Warrington Wolves as they hopped on the place to Perpignan for a Saturday evening encounter with the Catalans Dragons who went into battle for the first time in the post-Tomkins era.
There is no denying that Burgess was a giant of the game as a player, having battled for ten years at the top of the Australian game, but fans of Warrington and neutrals alike were wondering how his no-nonsense playing style would translate into his coaching ethos.
Pre-match the bookies were struggling to pick a side and gave the visitors just a four-point start on the coupon as it promised to be a great season opening battle in front of the partisan Dragons crowd in the South of France.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 17th Feb 2024 7:23 PM
The vagaries of the fixture computer threw together Leeds Rhinos and the Salford Red Devils with Paul Rowley’s side having to face their two key play makers of 2023 in the colours of their opponents, with Brodie Croft and Andy Ackers making their Rhinos debuts.
It was a new look Rhinos side with several arrivals, and departures, over the close season and Salford had to look to build again in 2024 after losing a few of their key players over the winter.
The visitors were given a big ten-point start on the handicap coupon with the bookies and pundits alike giving them little chance of a first round win, but that’s exactly the odds that the Red Devils like and Rohan Smith will have warned his charges about complacency as his Leeds side look to live up to pre-season expectations.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 16th Feb 2024 9:59 PM
After a long hard winter, the waiting is finally over as we embark upon the 2024 Super League season which will culminate in a little under eight months with the Grand Final at Old Trafford when after one hundred and sixty-six games the top two sides in the league will fight it out for the ultimate prize.
First up was the Hull derby with the Black and Whites of FC playing hosts to their nearest neighbours the Red and White of KR with local pride up for grabs as both sides look to get their season off to the perfect start with a two pointer against their fiercest of rivals.
After a more successful season in 2023 it was the Robins who were the favourites with the bookies as they were handicapped by six points on the coupon, Willie Peters side expected to take the points against the side built by their former coach Tony Smith.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Thu 15th Feb 2024 9:56 PM
We are sure that you will remember that Rycroft very sadly died aged just 16 months last June.
Rycroft’s mum and dad, Catherine and Andrew (aka af on RLFANS and @andrewfoster101 on twitter) are looking for 74 more generous people to give just £10.
Thousands of people have already donated, Catherine and Andrew are roughly 98% of the way there, and they just need a final push to hit their funding target and be able to give £60,000 to his three charities - Great Ormond Street Hospital, Colchester Children’s Ward and SDS UK.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Mon 12th Feb 2024 8:43 AM
Two Championship sides were drawn together in the third round of the Betfred Challenge Cup as newly promoted Dewsbury Rams welcomed the ambitious York RLFC Knights to New Crown Flatt, more recently monikered the FLAIR Stadium for a Sunday afternoon showdown.
The visitors were massive favourites with the bookmakers having been given an eighteen-point handicap on the coupon as most pundits believed that Andrew Henderson´s side would have too much quality.
A home game against the Sheffield Eagles awaited the victor in round four.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 11th Feb 2024 3:38 PM
It was Championship against League One as two more sides began their road to Wembley with Barrow Raiders taking on an Oldham side who finished the 2023 season in fourth place in League One but who have undergone a massive transformation under coach Sean Long.
Barrow were slight favourites with the bookmakers and were handicapped by two points on the coupon as they looked to secure an away game in Round Four against the victors in tomorrow afternoon’s game between Swinton Lions and West Hull.
The forecast was for a chilly but dry afternoon as the two sides took to the field at Craven Park for what promised to be an evenly matched encounter with a potential cup shock on the cards.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 10th Feb 2024 2:09 PM
Rugby League Commercial and BBC Sport have confirmed a new three-year broadcast partnership which for the first time includes regular live coverage of the Betfred Super League and this month’s Betfred World Club Challenge, as well as the Men’s, Women’s and Wheelchair Challenge Cups.
The multi-platform coverage will also include highlights of every Super League match on the BBC Sport website and app, and an extension of Rugby League’s partnership with BBC radio, with commentaries on BBC Radio 5 Live and 5 Sports Extra, as well as the extensive coverage on BBC local radio which includes Betfred Championship and League One.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 9th Feb 2024 7:13 AM
Rugby League Commercial have today announced a tie up with multi-award winning German brewery ABK who will have rights across the Betfred Super League, Betfred Challenge Cup and England Rugby League with prominent branding at all Super League fixtures in 2024.
ABK will now become the official beer of rugby league and fans will get their chance to taste the range at the Magic Weekend which will be held in August at Elland Road in Leeds.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Mon 5th Feb 2024 4:34 PM
Round two of the group stages of the 1895 Trophy pitched a York RLFC Knights coming into the game on the back of a 114-10 win over Newcastle last week, against the recently relegated Wakefield Trinity who were taking part in their first competitive fixture of the season as they travelled to the LNER Community Stadium.
Wakefield, under new ownership and the coaching of the vastly experienced Daryl Powell, were expected to push aside all challengers in their quest for a return to Super League but at this early stage of the season there were plenty unknowns which Andrew Henderson’s York hoped to exploit.
This was the first meeting between the two sides in almost twenty-seven years, York victorious on that occasion by 13-10 at the Huntingdon Stadium.
Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 4th Feb 2024 4:39 PM