Following back to back losses to the Catalans Dragons, the Leeds Rhinos had what looked like, on paper, a simpler fixture as they welcomed strugglers Salford Red Devils to Headingley and a full unrestricted crowd for the first time since the start of the COVID epidemic.

For the Red Devils Ata Hingano was given his debut with a start from the bench while the Rhinos welcomed back King Vuniyayawa and kicker Rhyse Martin but were without the services of Luke Gale, Mikolaj Oledzki and Tom Holroyd.

Neither sides league position would benefit from a win but for both it would increase the buffer over the chasing clubs and for Salford it could be the win that finally secures their safety in Superleague as it would leave the Leigh Centurions requiring five emphatic wins from their remaining games to catch them up.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 23rd Jul 2021 9:39 PM | Views : 272 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

I was challenged within the heated exchanges of the withdrawal of Australia and New Zealand to write an article about it instead of just spouting off missives in 280 characters on twitter.

So here we are, for a bit of background, I have covered Rugby League for over 25 years, and covered events as accredited media including Grand Finals and World Cups.

This makes me no more or less knowledgable about a situation that has come about due to a rampant virus than anyone else of course.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 23rd Jul 2021 11:40 AM | Views : 435 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

On the day that the rugby league world was stunned by the withdrawal of Australia and New Zealand from this year’s World Cup, tonight’s Superleague encounter between the Huddersfield Giants and Hull FC had somewhat slipped under the radar.

Both sides knew that a win would do nothing for their respective league positions but for Hull FC it would consolidate their fourth position in the table and keep Warrington in their sights in terms of win percentage while a win for the Giants could be the final nail in the coffin for Leigh Centurion’s season and edge the home side to safety.

The bookies were expecting a close game, the visitor’s slight favourites with the Giants being given a four-point start on the handicap coupon with both sides being decimated by injuries and COVID issues.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Thu 22nd Jul 2021 9:42 PM | Views : 947 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

>>>>> Rugby League Radio - The Sunday Roast <<<<<<<

Recorded on 18-07-2021

AB Sundecks 1895 Cup Final

Bet Fred Challenge Cup Final

Plus much chatter around the formats, the decisions, the game and the future of the game.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 18th Jul 2021 6:43 PM | Views : 1008 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

The eagerly anticipated Betfred Challenge Cup Final saw St Helens and the Castleford Tigers meet for the very first time in the showpiece final as the two sides ran out into a crowded and sweltering Wembley for what promised to be a fascinating match.

There is currently a gulf between the two sides in league position with the Tigers having had a torrid time in recent weeks with some awful results while Saints haven’t lost for a month and have a recent 24-0 over their opponents tucked under their belt.

But this is Wembley, and this is the Challenge Cup Final, and it usually throws up surprises and shocks despite St Helens being massive favourites for the win.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 17th Jul 2021 5:10 PM | Views : 2274 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

After a days long ‘will they, won’t they’ the AB Sundecks 1895 cup final was given the go ahead as two Covid depleted sides, and their fans, made their way to Wembley Stadium for the Challenge Cup curtain raiser and a chance to lift the first trophy of the season.

Featherstone came into the game on the back of twelve straight wins in the 2021 Championship season, their only loss of the season coming to Superleague opposition in Hull FC in the Challenge Cup.

The experienced City Knights have had a disappointing season with just four wins in thirteen league outings and having lost their last four as well as going down by 16-12 when they faced Rovers earlier in the season.

The bookies and pundits couldn’t see past a Featherstone win, with many also fancying them to go on and secure promotion to Superleague at the end of the season.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sat 17th Jul 2021 1:50 PM | Views : 3327 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

A week after the Catalans Dragons came from behind to secure victory at Emerald Headingley, the Leeds Rhinos travelled to the south of France in a re-arranged round ten fixture on the eve of tomorrow’s Challenge Cup Final.

Neither side would alter their league position with either a loss or a victory but a win for the Dragons would mover them further clear of tomorrow’s cup finalists, St Helens, while a win for the Rhinos would edge them closer to sixth placed Hull KR on win percentage and increase their margin ahead of the other Wembley bound side, the Castleford Tigers.

The Dragons were massive favourites with the bookies for the win with the Rhinos being given a fourteen-point start on the handicap coupon.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 16th Jul 2021 7:59 PM | Views : 2721 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

With New South Wales having already sealed am emphatic series win, all that was left for Queensland was the thought of retaining some pride by picking up a win in the third and final State of Origin in a game played at the Cbus Stadium on the Gold Coast, a change to the original venue in Newcastle which was brought about due to a Coronavirus outbreak.

A capacity of just 27,000 were allowed into the stadium to see the concluding game of the 2021 series with coaches Fittler and Green both making several changes to their line-ups.

The Blues were without Saifiti, Luai and Cleary as Gutherson, Finucane, Moses and Hynes were brought into the side while the Maroons were without McCullough, Fifita, Arrow and Field who were replaced by Brimson, Ponga, Mann, Tabuai-Fidow, and Fleger, the latter two on debut.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Wed 14th Jul 2021 1:02 PM | Views : 2158 | Replies : 1 | READ MORE

Wakefield Trinity are still without a 2021 victory in the Women’s Super League and tonight they came up against a Bradford Bulls side with just a solitary win to their name which came against the Warrington Wolves ladies.

A convincing win for the Bulls would lift them above Featherstone Rovers but a loss to Trinity could see their West Yorkshire rivals jump ahead of them and send them to the bottom of the pile.

There was plenty to play for as the Bradford Ladies played their first game at Osdal in over two years.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Mon 12th Jul 2021 9:43 PM | Views : 1845 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

It was a full round of Championship fixtures as we entered round thirteen with the majority of games being scheduled as three o’clock kick offs on Sunday afternoon, the one exception being an early encounter between the Halifax Panthers and Whitehaven.

The other six games saw; Toulouse at Batley, London take on York, Newcastle at home to Dewsbury, Oldham face Bradford, Swinton against Sheffield and Widnes play Featherstone.

It would be a round which was not short of tries or points.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 11th Jul 2021 5:46 PM | Views : 3542 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

Super League was once again decimated by postponements due to Coronavirus with both Hull sides having their fixtures cancelled, one of the surviving games was between a Wigan Warriors side desperate to stop their slide down the table after a number of recent losses against a Huddersfield Giants side looking to climb the table after a dreadful start to the season.

The Giants gave debuts for loan signings Nathan Peats and Nathan Peteru who both arrived from the Leigh Centurions yesterday for the rest of the 2021 season.

Wigan made a couple of small tweaks to the side to accommodate the suspension of Willie Isa.

The Warriors were favourites to end their five-game losing streak and get the two points, the Giants getting an eight-point start on the handicap coupon.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 11th Jul 2021 5:03 PM | Views : 2568 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

Something had to give at Emerald Headingley as a Leeds Rhinos side, unbeaten in their last  four games came up against a top of the table Catalans Dragons side who were unbeaten since losing in the Challenge Cup at the beginning of May and who were on a winning run in Super League going back as far as the 24th April.

Leeds coach Richard Agar welcomed back skipper Luke Gale, Richie Myler, King Vuniyayawa and Cameron Smith while the league leaders were without the services of Gil Dudson and Micky McIlorum who missing through suspension and injury.

The bookies made the away side slight favourites but there wasn’t a lot in it, the Rhinos being given just a four-point start in the handicap coupon.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Fri 9th Jul 2021 9:35 PM | Views : 3262 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

Although a victory over the Leeds Rhinos in Monday night’s round thirteen game would put the Warrington Wolves ahead of all challengers in terms of competition points, it would still leave them in third spot in the table on the win percentage ladder.

The Rhinos also knew that they couldn’t improve their position in the league table with a win, but they would pull further clear of a Castleford Tigers side who were today awarded a 24-0 victory over Huddersfield as the Giants are unable to fulfil their fixture tomorrow evening.

Warrington were big favourites to continue a winning run going back over a month while the Rhinos are unbeaten since the 23rd of May, having lost a number of fixtures to Coronavirus.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Mon 5th Jul 2021 9:39 PM | Views : 3465 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

One of the seasons most eagerly anticipated games had a unfamiliar new slot as St Helens took on fierce rivals, the Wigan Warriors, for a Sunday evening kick-off in the opening game of round thirteen of Super League.

The Warriors have been on a downward spiral having lost on their last four outings while this is Saints first game for almost three weeks after the game against Hull KR was postponed, and they were awarded a walkover against the Castleford Tigers, who couldn’t raise a team.

The bookies couldn’t see past a home win, and a continuation of Wigan’s misery, and they gave the Warriors a twenty-point start on the coupon.

 

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 4th Jul 2021 9:28 PM | Views : 4313 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

Once again, Toulouse Olympique found themselves without a fixture as Oldham were not compelled to travel to the South of France as an amateur side.

The remaining fixtures took place over Saturday and Sunday with Featherstone Rovers hosting London in the only fixture on Saturday.

The remainder of games took place on Sunday afternoon, the Halifax Panthers game against the Widnes Vikings was delayed by thirty minutes due to a downpour just before the scheduled kick off time.

Bradford had a local derby against Batley while Sheffield made the short trip to Dewsbury to take on the Rams.

Elsewhere Whitehaven were the hosts to lowly Swinton and York entertained Newcastle Thunder.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 4th Jul 2021 5:18 PM | Views : 4383 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

After just one outing in June, the Rhinos were looking to get July underway with a third successive 2021 victory as they took on a struggling Leigh Centurions at Emerald Headingley in one of the surviving Round Twelve fixtures.

Leeds were without Luke Gale, Alex Mellor and Bodene Thompson after the all picked up bans following the bad-tempered meeting with the Salford Red Devils, Konrad Hurrell was added to the casualty list after suffering a head impact assessment failure in the same match.

The Centurions were without Tyrone McCarthy and Ben Reynolds who both picked up injuries against the Warrington Wolves on their last outing, but Adam Sidlow and Alex Gerrard returned from injury.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Thu 1st Jul 2021 9:24 PM | Views : 3968 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

Having not won a game since they beat the Leigh Centurions just over six weeks ago, the Wigan Warriors needed to defeat the side one place above them in the Super League 2021 table to try and halt an alarming downward spiral.

Warrington came into the match looking for a sixth consecutive Super League victory having already claimed the scalps of St Helens and the Catalans Dragons in a season which is starting to show promise for them being in the mix when the race for Old Trafford really gets underway.

Warrington were odds on favourites with the bookies to extend their unbeaten run and send Wigan down to fifth below Hull FC on the win percentage league ladder.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Wed 30th Jun 2021 9:39 PM | Views : 5260 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

For the second consecutive week we had a full programme of games in the Betfred Championship as we entered round eleven with two teams still unbeaten at the top of the pile in Toulouse and Featherstone, while the league was propped up by a winless Swinton Lions.

Featherstone Rovers hosted Newcastle Thunder on Saturday night with the remainder of games taking place on Sunday afternoon.

Sunday’s games saw Halifax at Batley, Widnes at Bradford and Dewsbury at Oldham.

London Broncos hosted Swinton, Whitehaven played York and Toulouse had a journey to take on Sheffield.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 27th Jun 2021 5:03 PM | Views : 6305 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

After almost a month’s hiatus due to Covid problems the Leeds Rhinos returned to action with a trip to the AJ Bell Stadium to take on a Salford Red Devils side who were looking to join Wakefield on three wins from eleven games, after the West Yorkshire side shocked the Wigan Warriors on Thursday evening.

The game had been re-arranged from Friday night to allow Leeds to release players for the England game, and coach Agar named Gale, Leeming, Prior and Oledzki in his starting line-up all four backing up from their representative duty.

The Red Devils had a six-point start on the coupon, the Rhinos favourites for the win, but neither side would improve their league table position by taking the win.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 27th Jun 2021 2:47 PM | Views : 3798 | Replies : 0 | READ MORE

After being taught a rugby league lesson in the opening State of Origin game by New South Wales, the Maroons of Queensland had a mountain to climb to level the series; a tall and snow covered mountain and one which they would have to scale without oxygen, liquids, and dressed only in their under crackers.

Brad Fittler made just one change to his dominant Blues side with Angus Crichton replacing Jake Trbojevic while Maroons coach Paul Green went for more wholesale changes with Andrew McCullough, Coen Hessm Francis Molo and Josh Papalii all making the side in place of Alexander Brimson, Harry Grant, Jaydn Su’A and Joe Ofahengaue.

Once again, the Blues were very short odds for the win which would seal the series victory at the Suncorp Stadium in Sydney.

Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Sun 27th Jun 2021 12:44 PM | Views : 2897 | Replies : 1 | READ MORE


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