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The Men’s Betfred Challenge Cup returns to BBC TV on the weekend of 13/14 April, with the mouth-watering ties between Hull KR and Leigh Leopards and St Helens and Warrington scheduled for broadcast on Saturday 13 and Sunday 14 respectively.

On Saturday 13 cup holders Leigh Leopards visit Sewell Group Craven Park to take on Hull KR in a repeat of last year’s memorable Wembley final, won by the Leopards in dramatic style through Lachlan Lam’s drop goal in golden point extra-time, the kick off in east Hull is 5pm.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Tue 26th Mar 2024 3:43 PM
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The quarter finals of the Challenge Cup are an all Super League affair after the remaining Championship sides were eliminated over the weekend along with the Leeds Rhinos, Salford Red Devils, Hull FC and London Broncos.

The remaining sides went into the hat for tonight’s draw which was held live on Radio 5 Live across the nation and was made by rugby league supporting darts players Michael Smith and Joe Cullen.

The fixtures will be played over the weekend of the 13th and 14th April with the television rights still to be decided.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Mon 25th Mar 2024 8:58 PM
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The Halifax Panthers had a giant killing on their minds as they took on the side sitting level top of the Super League after the opening five rounds and 2018 Cup winners, the Catalans Dragons at the New Shay.

The bookies and pundits were firmly of the opinion that it would be a big win for the visitors and gave the home side a thirty-point start on the coupon, but this is the famous Challenge Cup and so far in round six there hadn’t been a single surprise, the hopefuls filing into the stadium in the hope that this would be the one.

The Dragons were taking no chances as they fielded a very strong side giving due respect to the Panthers.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 24th Mar 2024 4:41 PM
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Just a week after the two sides met in the nation’s capital, Warrington Wolves and London Broncos met again in the Challenge Cup, this time at the Halliwell Jones Stadium as London tried to put the previous weekends hammering out of their minds and focus on the slim chance of cup progress.

London had been given a thirty-eight-point start on the coupon and if you fancied a flutter ten you could get 100/1 on a Broncos win, there was zero chance of an upset and every potential that it could be a cricket score in Warrington’s favour.

Warrington made a couple of changes to last week, but it was a fundamental shuffle in the pack for London in the hope of bolstering up round fives paper thin defence.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 23rd Mar 2024 7:13 PM
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Leigh Leopards entered the Challenge Cup still seeing their first win of 2024 after a disappointing start to the season and were up against Championship side Featherstone Rovers who have also had a mixed start to the season including last weekend’s loss against the Batley Bulldogs.

Leigh were without Gareth O’Brien but relieved that Lachlan Lam was back on the subs bench after suffering a gashed leg against the Rhinos a fortnight ago and they were up against a side who have been dogged by off field problems in the opening weeks of the new season.

Leigh were massive favourites for a big win, Featherstone given a thirty-two-point start n the handicap coupon, the visitors were on a hiding to nothing.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 23rd Mar 2024 3:47 PM
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St Helens were strong 18-8 winners over the Leeds Rhinos when tonight’s Challenge Cup hopefuls met in a regular round Super League encounter last weekend, and the bookies made the visitors slight favourites again by giving the Rhinos a two-point start on the handicap coupon.

The Rhinos had Paul Momirovski back in the centres alongside Rhyse Martin while Saints had Waqa Blake in the centres and Moses Mbye at scrum half for Lewis Dodd, and Curtis Sironen back in the starting line-up with Batchelor on the bench.

A place in the quarter finals was up for grabs and on paper there was little to choose between the two sides.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 22nd Mar 2024 9:39 PM
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The top of the table awaited Warrington Wolves as they travelled south to take on the London Broncos in the knowledge that a victory by more than forty-four points would lift them to the top of the pile at the end of round five of Super League XXIX.

After their promotion at the end of last season the Broncos are still seeking their first win of 2024 as they look to clamber from the foot of the table, a loss by less more than ten points would see them drop back below the Castleford Tigers and into bottom spot.

The bookies and pundits couldn’t see past a win for the visitors with London being given a twenty-four-point start on the coupon.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 17th Mar 2024 4:45 PM
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The expectation was for a cricket score as second bottom side in the 2024 Super League, Castleford Tigers, travelled to the notoriously hostile Stade Gilbert Brutus to take on the Catalans Dragons.

A win by forty-five points or more would leapfrog the Dragons over Wigan and Saints and into the top spot on the five-week-old table, while a win for the Tigers would move them above a Hull FC side who were thrashed earlier in the afternoon, and into tenth place in the table, more importantly getting their 2024 season off the mark.

The Dragons were handicapped by twenty-two points on the handicap coupon, the bookies in no doubt that it would be a big win for the home side.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 16th Mar 2024 7:18 PM
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The sides could change their league position as a result of their round five Super League XXIX clash as ninth placed Hull FC hosted a Leigh Leopards side who began the game in a disappointing tenth spot and without a win in their opening three fixtures of the season.

Tony Smith welcomed back several stars returning from injury and suspension while the Leigh side continues to look strong, despite the loss of Lachlan Lam and Tom Amone, and confound the pundits as to why they have not recorded any victories so far in this campaign.

The Black & Whites were slight favourites with the bookies but with Leigh commanding just a two-point start on the handicap coupon there was very little to choose between them for a Saturday afternoon encounter.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 16th Mar 2024 4:45 PM
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Despite home advantage, the Leeds Rhinos were given a four-point start on the handicap coupon as they took on the reigning Champions St Helens at Headingley Stadium in the sole Friday evening game in Super League XXIX.

Saints already had second place and knew that a win in excess of twenty-two points would see them above arch-rivals Wigan Warriors into top spot, the Rhinos knew that a win would lift them to second spot in the table overnight.

Saints were without the suspended Mark Percival after last week’s sending off and lost Tommy Makinson in the warm-up while Leeds had ex-Saint James Bentley back in their side after his suspension.

This was the first of two encounters between the two sides in two weeks.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 15th Mar 2024 9:45 PM
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With the sides level on points at the top of the table but separated by a massive seventy-one points difference and five league positions, the winner of tonight’s clash between the Salford Red Devils and Wigan Warriors would be two points clear at the top of the table.

Wigan are unbeaten so far in 2024, having played a game less than their opponents, while Salford have won three from their four games, including the shock scalp of St Helens in an away fixture for the first time in decades.

But Wigan were the strong favourites, to take the win and maintain an all competition fourteen game, winning streak running all the way back to 23rd of July 2023 when the Warriors lost to Hull KR in the Challenge Cup Semi Final.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Thu 14th Mar 2024 9:50 PM
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Ahead of the start of the Betfred Championship season in Sheffield and Wakefield this Friday night, the Championship and League One clubs have had confirmation of a managed transition of the competition structure below Super League over the next two seasons, to produce two divisions of 12 clubs from 2026.

Following a detailed six-month review involving all Tier Two and Three clubs alongside the RFL executive, the Betfred Championship will become a 13-team division for one season only in 2025, with League One expanding to become at least 10 teams - and applications to be invited for an 11th (for full details, see the summary below).

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Thu 14th Mar 2024 8:52 AM
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The draw for the sixth round of the 2024 Betfred Challenge Cup took place tonight at the BBC studios in Salford with former League star Iestyn Harris doing the honours of revealing the ties.

All twelve Super League sides were looking to avoid one another with just three wins required for a Wembley appearance, while the remaining four sides from outside the top division; Batley Bulldogs, Featherstone Rovers, Halifax Panthers and Sheffield Eagles, were all looking for a big pay day and a potential Super League scalp.

It was an exciting night for fans of rugby league.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Mon 11th Mar 2024 6:42 PM
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The magic of the Challenge Cup paired the favourites to win this season`s Championship, Wakefield Trinity, against the side who have flirted with promotion for the last couple of seasons but who are currently experiencing some financial difficulties, Featherstone Rovers, in a fifth-round tie to make the mouth water.

Wakefield were favourites with the bookies for the win with a ten-point handicap on the coupon, but Featherstone had home advantage on the notorious pitch at a vociferous and often hostile Post Office Road.

A sixth-round place in a hat full of Super League teams beckoned for the winner over the eighty minutes.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 10th Mar 2024 4:54 PM
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In the final game of round four of Super League XXIX the Catalans Dragons needed the win to go level on points with the five clubs above them with a share of the top slot in the division while a win of forty-nine points or more would see them above Wigan into top spot, on points difference.

A win for Hull FC was unlikely to change their league position but it would open some breathing space between themselves and the three sides below them who are currently all looking for their first league points of the season.

The home side were string favourites with the bookies, few considered that the Black and Whites had any chance of securing their second win of the season.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 9th Mar 2024 7:22 PM
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Leigh Leopards were still seeking their first win of the season as they entered the fourth round of Super League XXIX with a game against a Leeds Rhinos side with their eyes on the top half of the table after a great win against the Catalans Dragons last time out.

The Rhinos were slight favourites with the bookies, but many pundits thought that it was too close to call with Leigh only getting a two-point start on the handicap coupon.

It was another week and another suspension for the Rhinos with James Bentley missing, but they did welcome back Mikolaj Oledzki, Leigh also made changes including the return of Tom Amone after a suspension, but they were still without John Asiata.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 8th Mar 2024 9:58 PM
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Warrington Wolves travelled east to take on Hull KR as two of the sides who hope to be in contention for the top six at the end of the season met with a chance to go to the top of the table, at least for twenty-four hours.

Nial Evalds replaced Joe Burgess for the Robins while Sam Burgess’s side saw the returns of George Williams, Connor Wrench and Jordy Crowther.

Hull KR were favourites for the win with the Wolves being given a four-point start on the handicap with both sides knowing that a win would send them second, a big win for either side sending them above St Helens into top spot, but most pundits thought it would be a close game.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Thu 7th Mar 2024 9:47 PM
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Either Hull FC, or the newly promoted London Broncos, would get their 2024 points haul off the big zero as the two sides met in the final game of round three of Super League XXIX, with the leagues bottom side taking on the team in tenth spot.

The Airlie Birds came into the game decimated by injuries and suspensions after a nightmare start to the season which had seen them zero from two with a big negative points difference having only managed to score a total of ten points, but they were still two places above their opponents who had managed just a single try in their two games while shipping in seventy points.

The bookies had installed the Broncos as the underdogs with a fourteen-point start on the coupon but the round had seen a couple of shocks in the fixtures earlier in the weekend.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 3rd Mar 2024 4:56 PM
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Hull Kingston Rovers had their eyes on the top of the table as they travelled to a soggy Greater Manchester to take on a Salford Red Devils side who were looking to spoil the visitors one hundred percent start to the season, and go back above the Leeds Rhinos into the top half of the table.

A win of any description would lift KR into second, a big points win would see them finish the round in top spot and they were favourites with the bookies to take the points off Salford, the home side getting eight points start on the coupon.

Salford lost Ryan Brierley prior to kick off with a hamstring issue, Chris Atkin stepping into his shoes at full back for the hosts.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 2nd Mar 2024 7:18 PM
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The Rhinos came into their third-round clash without the services of the injured Mikolaj Oledzki and the suspended James Donaldson and Sam Lisone as the Catalans Dragons were in Leeds looking for their third consecutive win at the start of the season.

A win by thirty-two points or more would lift the Dragons to the top of the table but a win for the Rhinos by twenty-three or more points would lift them above the visitors today and keep them in touch with the top of the table despite last weeks loss at Hull KR.

The bookies had made the Rhinos slight favourites for the win with a two-point handicap on the coupon but there was very little to choose between the two sides.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 2nd Mar 2024 4:53 PM
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