Super League XXIII Round 1 Tips: Rhinos and St Helens to lay down their markers
The new Super League season gets underway on Thursday night and we have a new man to guide us through the weekly action. Rugby league enthusiast Philip Spink provides his round one thoughts and tips...
"McGuire's exit aside, Leeds will have a far more settled team than their opponents and that could prove to be the difference at this early stage. Back Leeds to win and Myler to get on the scoresheet."
Warrington Wolves vs Leeds Rhinos
Thursday 1st February, 19:45
Live on Sky Sports Arena and Main Event
The record-breaking Grand Final-winners Leeds Rhinos travel to Warrington Wolves for the televised match on Thursday as Super League XXIII gets underway.
Warrington suffered the indignity of the Qualifiers in 2017, but won all seven games and will take heart from the fact that their opponents bounced back to their very best when it mattered last season having endured the same fate 12 months earlier. They have a good recent record against Leeds at the Halliwell Jones Stadium but could be vulnerable first time up to the Champions who can lay down a marker.
Plenty of eyes will be on Richie Myler, who has big boots to fill from Danny McGuire, but who couldn't have asked for a better first game against the club where he made his name. He could have a big night.
McGuire's exit aside, Leeds will have a far more settled team than their opponents and that could prove to be the difference at this early stage. Back Leeds to win and Myler to get on the scoresheet.
St Helens vs Castleford Tigers
Friday 2nd February, 19:45
Live on Sky Sports Main Event and Action
The last meeting between these two sides is still fresh in the memory, a 23-22 classic in the Play Offs, with Luke Gale's Golden Point taking Castleford to Old Trafford.
Many predict this could well be this year's Grand Final game and a thrilling 80 minutes looks in store.
St Helens lowered the colours of Castleford twice last season, including on the only occasion they met on Merseyside, running out hard-fought 26-22 winners on Easter Monday. It is 2/1 that the Saints can repeat that feat with a 1-12 winning margin and with a full-strength squad we'll take Justin Holbrook's side to get off to the perfect start.
St Helens to win by 1-12 points 2/1