Two weeks tomorrow, Betfred Super League XXIII gets underway as the Warrington Wolves welcome last season’s Champions the Leeds Rhinos to the Halliwell-Jones Stadium in the opening fixture. A few minutes later the Challenge Cup winners Hull FC open their campaign with a home fixture against the Huddersfield Giants.

Friday sees three fixtures with; Salford Red Devils at home to Wigan Warriors, St Helens entertaining the minor premiers the Castleford Tigers, and the newly promoted Hull KR at home against Wakefield Trinity. The final game of the opening round takes place on Sunday afternoon when the Widnes Vikings have their first game against last season’s Million Pound victors, the Catalans Dragons.

But what do the bookies think will be the outcome of what promises to be a closely fought season?

The bookmakers have stuck with last season’s Minor Premiers and Grand Final runners-up Castleford as their favourites for 2018 and have them as slight 9/2 favourites to be this year’s Grand Final winners. St Helens and Wigan Warriors are joint second favourites at 5/1 with Hull FC and Leeds Rhinos being offered at 6/1. Warrington are 7/1 but outside those six the bookies are offering massive odds on any other side from picking up the Super League trophy. The remaining six sides’ odds range from Huddersfield Giants at 33/1 to Widnes Vikings at 500/1.

Looking at the popularity of bets, OddsChecker is reporting that Warrington are the heaviest backed team, followed closely by St Helens, but there is very little interest from the public in any other bet.

The betting for the Challenge Cup is a little tighter with Castleford Tigers and Wigan Warriors being joint favourites at 5/1 with St Helens at 11/2, Leeds Rhinos at 6/1, and Hull FC at 13/2 to retain their trophy. Warrington are listed at 7/1 with the rest of the field being 25/1 or longer odds.

In terms of popularity of bets, Leeds Rhinos are the heaviest backed to win the cup followed closely by Castleford Tigers, Wigan Warriors, Hull FC and Warrington Wolves.

There are plenty of other markets available for Super League. The favourite four sides to enter the middle eights come the season split are; Hull KR, Widnes, Salford and Catalans Dragons. Wakefield and Huddersfield are favourites to make up the rest of the bottom six.

St Helens are the favourites to be the Minor Premiers but the bookies think they will be pushed down to the wire by Castleford Tigers. Wigan are tipped to end the regular season in the third play-off position with it being impossible to distinguish between Hull FC, Leeds Rhinos and Warrington Wolves for the last semi-final spot.

Remember, only bet of you can afford to lose your stake, but hopefully our overview gives some indication of the sides that the bookies think you should be watching in the coming months.

To summarise;

Minor Premiers: St Helens.

Grand Final Winners: Castleford Tigers.

Challenge Cup: Castelford Tigers or Wigan Warriors.  


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