Below is a round-up of all the latest news from the world of rugby league over the last 24 hours.
Roosters want Young for ’23
It was reported yesterday that Dom Young had agreed a deal with Sydney Roosters for the 2024 season onwards, once his contract with Newcastle expires. However the latest news from down under has revealed that the Roosters are hoping for either a player swap or even willing to pay to acquire his services for this campaign onwards.
Debut for Leeds’ PNG star?
Nene Macdonald has found his name on a Leeds Rhinos’ team sheet for the first time following his arrival this off-season. The star centre has been recovering from an injury sustained at the World Cup but has been named in the 21-man squad for Friday. Rohan Smith has since spoke about the likelihood fans get to see the PNG powerhouse, and also commented on former Rhinos’ Brad Dywer and Liam Sutcliffe who they will face.
Salford extend skipper Watkins
Salford Red Devils have been on a re-signing spree during the off-season which has included Joe Burgess, Tim Lafai, Brodie Croft and now they’ve tied down Kallum Watkins. The centre turned second rower was made skipper by Paul Rowley and he’ll potentially wear the armband until 2025 having signed a three-year contract extension.
Jon Wilkin slams NRL & gets nomination nod
Jon Wilkin is as honest as the day is long and he rarely holds back in his opinions, something that has seen him nominated for a punditry award. He’s also taken those opinions and hammered the NRL for “disrespecting” Super League in the midst of his former team St Helens’ WCC victory.
Smith family face off at Headingley
Tony Smith has named his squad to play against nephew Rohan Smith’s side this Friday and it sees just one change from the week one victory. Some big names remain injured including signing Jake Trueman.
James Graham worried WCC “damages” Saints’ domestic chances
St Helens legend James Graham has spoken about the amazing success that Paul Wellens’ group of players achieved on Saturday morning, however he’s also issued a warning for the upcoming season. The former England icon has suggested that the trip to Australia may ‘damage’ their chase for a fifth Grand Final victory.
Best of the rest Team News
Huddersfield make their first appearance of the Super League campaign as they welcome Warrington to the John Smith’s Stadium. It’s a match that already looks set to be one between two huge playoff challengers. Meanwhile two sides looking for a first win face off at the DW as Matt Peet names an unchanged side to face Wakefield.
Sam Tomkins racing to return
England captain and Catalans Dragons’ star Sam Tomkins missed round one after undergoing surgery in the off-season. He was expected to miss the first four or five rounds but he’s provided an update, and is even keen to feature as soon as Friday.
Ian Watson gives Jake Connor timeline
Huddersfield Giants made an array of signings but none bigger in notoriety that Jake Connor, the talented playmaker arriving from Hull FC and returning to the club he broke through with. Despite that he’s yet to make his second debut due to injury but head coach Ian Watson has revealed when he could return.
Catalans “alert” The RFL regarding rivals pitch
It’s a new era at Wakefield Trinity with new boss Mark Applegarth and the process of a stadium redevelopment underway. One thing that’s already been done is the relaying of the pitch, however it’s not to the approval of the Catalans’ players who performed there on Friday. According to reports in France the side have alerted The RFL over the injuries it has caused.
Former Rhino keen for Champions League style WCC
Former Leeds Rhino Matt Adamson has told Serious About Rugby League about the benefits he feels the sport would see if it reverted to the 1997 style World Club Challenge. That format was much closer to football’s Champions League and one he believes the game “would have been better for.” The 50-year-old also revealed a desire to coach in the UK having worked with Catalans and Melbourne Storm previously.
Wire youngster injury news
Warrington Wolves have big plans for young Matty Nicholson after granting him the number 12 shirt in his first full season at the Halliwell Jones. He’s clearly a big part of their present as well as their future, however he won’t be playing for the next few weeks having suffered injury in round one, the club confirming his injury status today.
Saints in slow journey home
Paul Wellens’ men returned home after their incredible World Club Challenge victory and the main man was joined by Tommy Makinson on BBC News this morning. The pair revealed all about the game but Wellens also noted the “complications” that led to a mammoth 53 hour return, something that their weekend opponent’s Castleford Tigers might be happy to hear about.
RFL set out inclusivity rounds
The RFL have announced their plans to promote diversity in the game and that will see the introduction of ‘Inclusion’ fixtures. These will be dedicated home games for Super League sides where they can promote a cause that itself promotes greater inclusion and diversity in sport or community. Castleford take the mantle this weekend and will showcase their PDRL (Physical Disability Rugby League) side. The RFL have also joined forces with other bodies to call on the Prime Minister to provide greater support for grassroots sports.