THE Championship is dominated by special talent that, for one reason or another, hasn’t made the step up to Super League – or is yet to.
In recent years, the likes of Chris Hill, Alex Walmsley, Joe Batchelor and Abbas Miski are just some of those that started their UK rugby league trade in the lower leagues that have then made the step up.
Looking around the Championship for 2024, there are five key players that stand out that could become Super League players of the future.
Ebon Scurr – Bradford Bulls
Ebon Scurr was reportedly hunted by Hull FC last summer and it’s no surprise why. The 23-year-old made his senior debut for the Bradford Bulls against Barrow Raiders in the 1895 Cup in 2019, having come through the club’s Academy system and has since gone on to make over 50 appearances for the West Yorkshire club. A real workhorse that regularly punches holes in opposition defences, Scurr is highly thought of at Odsal and in the rugby league world and certainly wouldn’t look out of place in the top division.
Myles Lawford – Wakefield Trinity
Another Bradford Academy graduate, Myles Lawford signed for Wakefield Trinity back in August on a three-year deal with the West Yorkshire side fending off considerable interest for his signature. The 20-year-old halfback has England and Yorkshire Academy experience under his belt with Wakefield paying a transfer fee to acquire his services. Lawford has 14 senior appearances to his name, scoring eight tries and kicking 12 goals in the process.
Lachlan Walmsley – Wakefield Trinity
As things stand, it is a surprise that Lachlan Walmsley has not yet made it to Super League, especially when the Wigan Warriors were linked with his signature last year. The 25-year-old flyer will be part of Wakefield’s rejuvenation under new head coach Daryl Powell in 2024 and it’s likely that he will catch the eye even more than when he played at Halifax. A Scotland international, Walmsley has the drive and speed to make it in the big time.
Bailey Antrobus – York Knights
He signed a new deal with the York Knights only a month ago, but Bailey Antrobus is a Super League player-in-waiting. Just 23 years of age, Antrobus joined York for the 2022 season and quickly became a cult hero at the North Yorkshire club with his barnstorming runs and solid defensive accolades impressing out wide. He played all three group games for Wales in last year’s Rugby League World Cup and is ready to make the leap to the top flight.
Keven Appo – Bradford Bulls
The second Bradford player on this list is Papua New Guinea international Keven Appo, who has become a firm fan favourite at Odsal since joining the club for 2023. The 24-year-old is one of Bradford’s most devastating forwards and isn’t shy of scoring a try with six in 18 Bradford appearances so far. Appo is certainly one to look out for again in 2024 as the Bulls aim to improve on a third-place finish in 2023.
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