Our look at the latest round of Super League, with the competition going global, and old habits dying hard.
Here’s Up the Cream’s review of all the action.
Postponements – Rovers vs Castleford & Leeds vs Catalans
Thursday night’s scheduled game was called off despite the conditions between Hull and Cas not being too bad. Why? Well the home side do go to France this week and require some bodies back. Makes you wonder. And speaking of said French side, did they have any intention of travelling to England to face Leeds this week? I doubt it. Find your balls and return them to your sack, lads.
Friday – Hull 21 Warrington 12
After all the commotion to whether the game would be on or not, the actual conditions weren’t too bad. There was very little ice or snow around the KCOM and it was no colder than the two friendlies earlier in the year. Typical social media then and all the snowflakes that go with it. I appreciate for Warrington fans getting across the M62 would have been an absolute nightmare, but they only bring a couple of hundred on an average day anyway, so sod um. That may upset a few people, but why call a game off for a few dozen fans when conditions in Hull are perfectly fine? You know the risk of travelling and no-one forced anyone to go, so well done to the club for getting the game on.
As for the contest it wasn’t the best, but it was a vital two points for the Black and Whites. Carlos Tuimavave really was excellent, as was Jake Connor, but the main talking point was Liam Watts, who’s moment of madness saw him sent off late in the second half. Declan Patton was too dismissed in an eventful second forty that turned everyone into a psychiatrist post-match. Absolute morons.
Friday – Wigan 32 Widnes 16
A pretty notable comeback from Wigan, who scored 32 unanswered points against a Widnes team that have surprised a few people this season. They looked nailed on for the wooden spoon, but that doesn’t seem to be the case now. Of course, they’ll be disappointed with the result, but it’s no disgrace. Wigan’s shape looks very good this year and they’ll be right up there competing for silverware.
Sam Tomkins is getting back to something of his former best, and scored a terrific individual try. He’s a much more rounded player now, defensively improved and a real leader of the Wigan team. He’s not bad at refereeing either.
Also you have to give credit for the Wigan club on getting the game on. I wonder if they’ll get the same level of praise to the criticism they got when moving the same fixture last season?
Sunday – Wakefield 22 Huddersfield 4
To think Wakefield were in a relegation battle with Bradford just under two and half years ago is pretty remarkable. They are genuine top four contenders now and will challenge for one of the play-off spots between now and September. What a turnaround. Full credit to Agent Chessie, who’s exploits not only got our vocal cords chuckling with a certain display at Wembley, but who’s completely turned around what was a Super League minnow into a force to be reckoned with.
Wakey are not a team of superstars but they work for one another and are a solid team unit. Right now, I’ve got nothing but respect for them. I just wish the local council would pull their finger out and approve the new stadium, with the side showing once again they are serious about their ambitions.
Sunday – St Helens 16 Salford 2
Ben Barba starred for the Saints again as they eased past Salford in this rearranged game. Fair play to Justin Holbrook’s side here, as they only have a five-day turnaround before the Warrington game now, so they knew the complications, but unlike some, just got on with it.
The first half was a very tight affair, but class shined after the break. Salford stuck with their opposition, but a late surge made the result look a lot more comfortable. The Red Devils are a plucky outfit, whereas Saints look like they’ll be right up there come the business end, especially with Barba amongst their ranks.
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