February, the month that all Rugby League fans rejoice for. After four long, monotonous months of doing nothing apart from reminiscing about the season gone by the greatest game of all returns to our screens and stadiums. So with the opening month of rugby league almost over and Auckland 9’s, the World Club Challenge, the Challenge Cup and Super League all starting in the wonderful month of February , lets have a look back at the stars and setbacks of the month.
Team Super League
Where else could any British rugby league fan start? On the third weekend of the month, Wigan and Warrington secured historic results against two of the NRL’s best (Cronulla and Brisbane) and in turn could, arguably, have saved the future of the World Club Series and maybe even British Rugby League. Team Super League didn’t just beat the NRL (for the first time in 5 years) either, they annihilated them!
Although only 2 game into his return to Super League, Bird has been outstanding! Making 59 tackles and 293 meters in just his first 2 games, Bird has probably been the most influential player in the Dragons’ squad. His form has been key to propel Catalans to an unbeaten start to the 2017 season.
‘We are top of the league, Say we are top of the league’ rang out across the Halliwell Jones Stadium on Friday night and perhaps surprisingly, it wasn’t from the home faithful. In both of Castleford’s opening Super League fixtures, they won, convincingly. In their opening game, they steamrolled Leigh and scored 7 tries in the process. And last Friday night Cas were truly class in beating Wire. The likes of Zak Hardaker and Luke Gale ran riot and earned the Tigers a 22-30 victory. Standing at the top of the pile, no one can argue that Cas don’t deserve to be there and now the only question is, can they live up to their hype and win some end-of-season silverware?
Siddal vs Toronto
Mud, Tick. Sweat, Tick. Tears, Tick. Anything that you relate to classic, vintage rugby league match, this match had, all be it with a trans-Atlantic twist. Practically everybody watching on the excellent BBC Stream was expecting a fairytale of a different kind then what they got. But what a sensational surprise! The NCL side, Siddal, looked, at times, as if they were a fully professional outfit, the heart of their defense was as proud as a lion’s and not only did they do themselves proud but they did British rugby league proud. And Toronto carried out a professional display to eventually win 14-6 and will probably never play on such a bad pitch.
Tipped by many Aussies to finish outside of the top 8 in 2017, the Roosters gave the world of Rugby League a shock as they stormed to their maiden 9s tittle. Led by young stars like Connor Watson (the tournements MVP), the Roos proved that not only are they contenders for the Play-Offs this season, but also maybe Tittle contenders once again in the future.