There can hardly have been a better start to a season of rugby league than the one we have witnessed this year.
Anyone truly is capable of beating anyone this year in the super league it seems! Having watched my club, Hull KR, demolished in the 2nd half of their match with Salford, who were then soundly beaten by London Broncos, all whilst the “big 4” seem to also be no longer having all their own way, with Huddersfield Giants determined to lead from the front and stay there this season.
Leeds, although beaten in the World Club Challenge seem to be waiting until late August, early September before mounting an assault to win (another) grand final, but from lower than 5th place for a change of scenery. It really says something about that group of players that they can win the end of season tourney from 5th. They have exceptional players in so many areas, and in Kevin Sinfield, they have a leader on the field who is admired by those OUTSIDE of the game for what he’s done.
Lower down the table, Salford’s new owner, Dr Marwan Koukash promised after the club’s defeat to London that it would not happen again & no one’s job was safe…2 days later, Phil Vievers was consigned to Salfords history and Alan Hunte was installed as interim head coach. I was sat in the stands for that match, and have to say, I thought Salford looked very light in comparison to London. It’s not just coaching that needs to alter & I fear it could take longer to build a winning team than the good Dr is willing to wait…
Back to the smoke, and “London is a unique opportunity,” Nigel Wood told BBC London 94.9.“It is almost inconceivable to consider yourself a national sport without having a strong presence in the capital. We just have to make sure that we get that presence right.”It is probably not right as it is and we need to work with all the stakeholders to improve that.
“It is extremely important that we ‘do London’ and ‘do London’ well in terms of rugby league.”
Now, as we’ve had a London club competing against the Premier league, Football league and all the rugby union clubs, its heartening to see that the RFL still think that the future for the game in our capital is bright. Looking away from Super League, inside the M25, there are more teams than ever to go and either watch, or even play at than ever before. From Ravens wood college in Bromley all the way north to Southgate (http://www.barnetsouthgate.ac.uk) there is more to the game than the Broncos.
The season rolls ever onwards, and I’ve already got my ticket ready for the Magic Weekend at the end of May (http://bit.ly/ZpYOE9) and sales are looking as good, if not better than last years event. It really is a festival of rugby, and great to show that despite what we might think about other clubs, we will happily sit with fans from other clubs and enjoy great games, no matter which 2 clubs are playing.
Anyway, there is a lot of matches between now and then. This Friday, Leeds take on Wigan in the tie of the round.
I did ask on twitter before the start of the season if Leeds fans would swap Sinfield for Tomkins. The answer was a resounding NO! I wonder given the start that both clubs have had, if the answer will be the same AFTER Friday’s match?
Anyway, enjoy your Rugby league, who ever you support, and I’ll see you all at the Etihad over the bank holiday.