This weekend saw both of last year’s Grand Finalists suffer defeat, the Centurions remain winless and plenty of disruption thanks to the ongoing pandemic. But what were the major talking points from this weekend’s Super League action?
1. Wigan and Saints lose ground in race for top spot
After both sides suffered defeat to Catalans in recent weeks, last year’s Grand Finalists have slipped firmly behind the Dragons at the top of the league after losses this weekend. Whilst the French outfit enjoyed a week off due to Leeds’ ongoing Covid-19 outbreak, both St Helens and Wigan suffered defeat. The Saints failed to cross the tryline against Warrington whilst Wigan were outplayed by Hull KR. But what does this mean? Well it adds further credence to the notion that Catalans are serious contenders this term whilst also suggesting that perhaps Saints and Wigan aren’t the dominant forces many thought they would be this season. They’re still my favourites to feature at Old Trafford but that no longer seems like the sure thing it once was.
2. What’s going wrong at Huddersfield?
Before the season started, Huddersfield were many people’s dark horse. The Giants recruited well and brought in a top quality coach in the shape of Ian Watson. Yet something just isn’t clicking. They lost to Watson’s former side Salford on Friday night as they continue to struggle. At times, Huddersfield have been brilliant this year but that wasn’t the case on Friday night. Yes the game was gripped by the controversy of the wrong man being sent off. But the Giants still should’ve had enough to defeat the Red Devils who were down a man for most of the game.
3. Where’s Leigh’s first win coming from?
The Centurions suffered yet another defeat this weekend, this time at the hands of Hull FC. It was arguably Leigh’s worst showing this season as they conceded over 60 points. The question has to be asked, how do they turn things around. There’s some definite quality in their squad and their ability to score 22 points showed that. Something needs to change if they want to survive.
4. Hull sides impress
Both Hull teams were doubted before the start of the season. However, there can be no doubts over the way they’ve been performing this term. Hull FC at times have looked like genuine title contenders and showed that quality again when they ran in 12 tries against Leigh yesterday. Meanwhile, Hull KR continue to play exhilarating rugby whilst showing great character. It was that character that took them to victory against Wigan. Playing that way KR look headed for the play-off spots as do their city-rivals. Their performances and ability to one-up one another has become an intriguing sub-plot this season.
5. The pandemic continues to cause problems
For the second week in a row, Leeds’ fixture was postponed as they continue to battle the virus. With the All-Stars game next week, it has led coach Richard Agar to disclose his concerns over fielding a team next week as the virus continues to make players unavailable. Similar problems faced Hull KR this week and Huddersfield last week. It shows that we’re not out of the woods yet with regards to the pandemic and that maybe some changes need to be made with regards to the hectic fixture list we’re about to face.