WELL, Super League is back with Round One kicking off on Thursday night when the Hull derby takes centre stage.
Friday then sees Leeds Rhinos host Salford Red Devils, St Helens take on London Broncos and Leigh Leopards go up against Huddersfield Giants.
The last two games of Round One take place on Saturday with Castleford Tigers hosting Wigan Warriors and Catalans Dragons taking on Warrington Wolves.
But, how will the results fall?
Hull FC vs Hull KR
Probably one of the most exciting opening games of a Super League weekend in the past decade, it just doesn’t get better than Hull FC and Hull KR knocking ten bells out of each other in a packed-out venue for Round One. Brad Fash is out for the Black and Whites, whilst there is a race against time to be fit for Carlos Tuimavave. Meanwhile, Kelepi Tanginoa could make his KR debut after missing pre-season with an injury with new signings Peta Hiku, Tyrone May and Oliver Gildart likely to start. Sam Luckley and Matty Storton are out. Hull still owe Rovers for their 40-point drubbing at home in 2023 and this may well be the time to get it.
Hull FC by 2
Leeds Rhinos vs Salford Red Devils
It’s going to be an interesting battle between Leeds and Salford with Brodie Croft and Andy Ackers playing for the Rhinos for the first time against their former side, with Nene Macdonald doing the same but vice-versa. Leeds will be without James McDonnell and Morgan Gannon for definite, but James Bentley and Tom Holroyd could feature. Paul Rowley will be without Ethan Ryan and with such a small squad (24 players) at his disposal, injuries could not have come at a worse time. The Red Devils will definitely still have bite with Rowley in charge, but a strong Leeds should prove too much here.
Leeds by 12
St Helens vs London Broncos
It doesn’t get much tougher for the newly-promoted London Broncos than an away trip to reigning world champions St Helens. And, Mike Eccles will have to do it without first-teamers Bill Leyland, Lewis Bienek, Josh Rourke, Alex Walker and Ethan Natoli because of injury. St Helens, meanwhile, look to be fighting fit for Round One with new signings Waqa Blake, Daryl Clark and Matt Whitley all expected to make their debuts. The Broncos will go down fighting, but Saints look to be far too strong for the capital club in what will be a baptism of fire.
St Helens by 22
Leigh Leopards vs Huddersfield Giants
It’s a new season and there is no chance of Leigh flying under the radar as they did in 2023. The Leopards had been tipped to be fighting relegation last year, but they won the Challenge Cup Final and made the Super League play-offs. Huddersfield, on the other hand, fell way below expectations. The Leopards will be without Nathan Wilde after he broke his collarbone but head coach Adrian Lam has a full-strength squad to pick from apart from the forward. Huddersfield will be without the banned Tui Lolohea and Luke Yates but new signings Jack Murchie and Adam Clune will play. Home advantage should prove key here.
Leigh by 8
Castleford Tigers vs Wigan Warriors
The first Super League game to be broadcast live on BBC Two will see Wigan make the trip to Castleford for a Saturday evening clash at The Jungle. The Tigers are basically a brand-new team in 2024 with a new coaching staff of Craig Lingard and Danny McGuire, whilst Wigan somehow look even stronger in 2024 than in 2023 with the additions of Kruise Leeming, Luke Thompson and Adam Keighran to name a few. Castleford will be without Rowan Milnes and Sylvester Namo through injury whilst Sam Walters will be missing for the Warriors. The visitors look well placed to inflict a big win over the Tigers.
Wigan by 14
Catalans Dragons vs Warrington Wolves
Last but certainly not least, Catalans host Warrington at the Stade Gilbert Brutus on Saturday night. It is a tough opening fixture for new Wolves boss Sam Burgess, who will be without Connor Wrench, Luke Thomas, Rodrick Tai and Matty Nicholson whilst Stefan Ratchford and Joe Bullock are doubts. The Dragons, meanwhile, have Siosiua Taukeiaho, Manu Ma’u and Tanguy Zenon on the sidelines with injury but Jayden Nikorima, Jordan Abdull and Chris Satae could debut for Steve McNamara. At home, Catalans are a force to be reckoned with and they should start like they mean to go on here.
Catalans by 10
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