The Dream Team is a simple concept, it should represent the best 13 players in each respective position across the course of a season.
Bias may come into it when fans debate but it is quite simply which player performed to a higher level across the regular season.
The bookmakers have now released who they think are the favourites for each respective position and using their most fancied players, here is the predicted 2023 Dream Team.
All odds are from Sky Bet and when prices are the same then both players will be listed.
Full-back: Jack Welsby/Jai Field – 4/1
The 2022 representative is priced as joint favourite here alongside St Helens youngster Jack Welsby. The pair are the standout duo at full-back in the competition and it’s easy to see why the bookmakers are edging it between the two. They top the market ahead of a three way tie at 6/1 of Jake Connor, his replacement Tex Hoy and Warrington Wolves’ Matt Dufty.
Wingers: Bevan French – 3/1 and Tommy Makinson – 4/1
Last season’s top scorer with an incredible 31 tries in 20 appearances, Bevan French, is set to make his second consecutive appearance in the dream team as the shortest priced winger in the market. The underrated Tommy Makinson takes the spot of Ken Sio though with the bookmakers seemingly favouring players from the favourites for the title, as opposed to star players in other teams.
Centres: Harry Newman – 3/1 and Mark Percival – 4/1
This English pair lead the market by a margin from a cluster of players priced at 8/1 including last season’s Dream Team member Tim Lafai. The other incumbent, Shaun Kenny-Dowall, is priced at 10/1 meaning there’s expected to be two fresh faces in the 2023 team. Percival is heading into his testimonial and needs no introduction, similar to Makinson his high levels of performance go under the radar due to his consistency. As for Newman he’s widely viewed as one of the elite prospects in this position and with an injury-free season could justify his favouritism.
Half-backs: Aidan Sezer, George Williams and Jonny Lomax – 4/1
Rather than offering the positions of scrum-half and half-back the bookmakers have just given us half-back and in that position there’s another three-way tie. Last season’s Man of Steel Brodie Croft is priced just outside of this trio at 6/1 but it’s the Leeds, Warrington and Saints men who top the betting. Lomax last appeared in this side in 2021 and if he returns healthy there’s no reason he won’t justify this price. As for Sezer and Williams they will be key to their team’s success and therefore you’d expect that their position in this team very much depends on their team performance.
Hooker: Edwin Ipape – 4/1
The man who has been priced as favourite to win the Man of Steel award, Papua New Guinean Edwin Ipape beats out last year’s hooker, James Roby. Leigh Leopards have done plenty of business but retaining the talented Ipape was arguably one of the best bits of business they did and if Leigh are to make a run at the play-offs then there can be a real shout for this prediction. However in what is looking likely to be James Roby’s swansong surely the St Helens stalwart at 5/1 is the justifiable bet.
Props: Alex Walmsley – 2/1 and Paul Vaughan – 8/1
Walmsley is considerably more favoured than anyone else in the market with the St Helens man expected to make a fourth straight Dream Team. Outside of Walmsley the betting is very open but it’s Warrington’s new signing Paul Vaughan who is favoured ahead of the likes of Mikolaj Oledzki, Agnatius Paasi, Chris Hill and KR’s new signing Sauaso Sue.
Back Row: Morgan Knowles – Evens, Liam Farrell – 2/1 and James Bentley – 4/1
Similar to the half-back and scrum-half positions the bookmakers are grouping the rest of the forward pack together and the betting comes out with a Saint, a Wigan and a Leeds player filling out shirts 11 though 13. Morgan Knowles takes his spot in this predicted team as the shortest price player among the whole squad. Liam Farrell joins Knowles in what would be the pair’s fifth consecutive selection to this team but their running mate from 2022, Chris McQueen, is replaced by James Bentley. McQueen finds himself back in the betting at 12/1 behind a bunch of players priced shorter including Joe Batchelor, Josh McGuire, Matty Nicholson and McQueen’s captain Luke Yates.
2023 Super League Dream Team as predicted using the bookmakers odds
1: Jack Welsby/Jai Field
2: Bevan French
3: Harry Newman
4: Mark Percival
5: Tommy Makinson
6: Jonny Lomax
7: Aidan Sezer/George Williams
8: Alex Walmsley
9: Edwin Ipape
10: Paul Vaughan
11: James Bentley
12: Liam Farrell
13: Morgan Knowles