8th August 2019, 14:15 | championship

Betfred Championship Preview

Betfred Championship Preview

Two games live on Our League

Saturday’s Betfred Championship fixtures could have implications of the play-off places as Toronto Wolfpack welcome York City Knights and Toulouse Olympique travel to Widnes Vikings. 

The Knights currently occupy 2nd spot with a slender one-point advantage over Toulouse and Leigh Centurions. However, York face the tough task of travelling to Toronto to face the Wolfpack who have already sealed the 2019 Betfred Championship League Leaders’ Shield. York are unbeaten in each of their last seven while Toronto are looking to extend their winning run to a staggering 18 games.

If the Knights were to fall to defeat it could see Toulouse jump above them in the Betfred Championship table. After a dip in form Olympique look to have found their feet again winning three consecutive games scoring a mammoth 154 points in the process. Widnes fell to defeat last weekend against Sheffield and are still looking over their shoulder at the relegation places but will come into the game with confidence being one of only a few sides to have beaten Toulouse in France this season. This game will be LIVE on Our League at 3pm on Saturday.

Leigh will also have an eye on 2nd spot as they travel to Rochdale Hornets on Sunday afternoon in a game which will be broadcast LIVE on Our League. The Centurions bounced back from AB Sundecks 1895 Cup heartbreak with a dramatic win over Swinton last weekend to extend their run of consecutive home league victories to nine. Rochdale’s relegation to Betfred League 1 was confirmed last weekend and they will be looking to begin their rebuild with a victory this weekend. 

The final play-off spot is currently held by Featherstone Rovers but they welcome Swinton Lions who have been in strong form as of late. The Lions took Leigh down to the wire last week in their first defeat in five games. Featherstone were on the positive side of a one-point victory as they edged out Dewsbury 24-25 to make it four wins in five games. The Rovers are four points clear of the chasing pack and know a victory will go a long way to earning a play-off berth.

Sheffield Eagles are Featherstone’s nearest challengers and earned a crucial win over Widnes last weekend in a dress rehearsal of the inaugural AB Sundecks 1895 Cup Final. They travel to fellow cup heroes Halifax RLFC who fell to a 22-30 loss against Toulouse last weekend. Sheffield have won two of their last three Championship games but haven’t picked up two points on the road since mid-June. 

Bradford Bulls still have an outside chance of sneaking the final play-off spot but can’t afford another slip up before the end of the season. The Bulls have now failed to win in each of their last three outings albeit by a different of just six points between the three games. They face Barrow who are still fighting hard to claim another season in the Championship. The Raiders did hammer Bradford 50-6 at home earlier in the season in the AB Sundecks 1895 Cup.

The third Heavy Woollen Derby of the season takes place on Sunday afternoon with Batley Bulldogs and Dewsbury Rams both looking to earn those final few points to secure Betfred Championship survival. The Bulldogs have won both derbies in 2019 and come into this weekend’s game on the back of a 26-50 win over Rochdale. 

Saturday 10th August

Toronto Wolfpack v York City Knights

Widnes Vikings v Toulouse Olympique 

Sunday 11th August

Barrow Raiders v Bradford Bulls

Batley Bulldogs v Dewsbury Rams

Featherstone Rovers v Swinton Lions

Halifax RLFC v Sheffield Eagles

Rochdale Hornets v Leigh Centurions