Sky Sports has always been a big part of rugby league since the summer game came into being in 1996.
In those 26 years, the TV channel has seen many pundits come and go with some incredibly popular and some not so.
But, just which five pundits should Sky Sports use for their Super League coverage?
When Leon Pryce has appeared on Sky, the former Saints, Bradford and Hull star has appeared knowledgeable and very charismatic. Having played the game at the highest level, the ex-halfback knows what he is talking about and the way he phrases his words makes you sit up and take note. Always honest yet pragmatic, Pryce certainly keeps audiences hooked and he should be used a lot more if Sky want more viewers to engage.
An ever-present for the BBC’s Challenge Cup coverage, Jon Wilkin could be a useful asset for a Sky channel that sometimes seems out of touch with the modern viewer. The ex-Saints and Toronto man only retired at the end of 2020 so he is still pretty much clued up about what it takes to be a professional rugby league player in the new decade. Plus, his knowledge and insight would be extremely beneficial.
Again, another pundit that knows what he is talking about, former London boss Tony Rea has impressed greatly whenever he has been asked to appear on Sky. Far away from the ‘fence-sitters’ that you would normally find with guest speakers, Rea voices his opinion charismatically and studiously, getting his point across without offending anyone. Giving Rea a more permanent role would certainly add spice to what appears to be a stagnant punditry set-up.
With a rugby league career under his belt that spans nearly 20 years, Kevin Brown has been there and done that at the highest level. Not only can the halfback speak from current experience, Brown can also draw on past events and does so in a calm and collected manner. It’s always interesting to see how a halfback views the play as opposed to the forwards that usually dominate the Sky commentary team and Brown fits the bill extremely well. He has also just retired so can spend more time dedicated to his work.
Like Jon Wilkin listed above, Jamie Peacock has become a regular with the BBC in recent seasons and provides welcome insight whenever he is on the punditry team. Revered throughout the game, Peacock would attract increased attention due to the way he commands an audience, plus he is actually a really good speaker too. A former prop that has won everything possible in the game, who better to speak from experience than Peacock?