A round twenty-two win would confirm that the Toronto Wolfpack would go into the play-offs as the top side in the Betfred Championship while wins for the Bradford Bulls and Sheffield Eagles would keep them in touch with the top five and a shot at Super League.

The Eagles travelled to Toulouse on Saturday night while the remainder of the games took place on Sunday afternoon. York and Bradford and Widnes against Toronto were probably the pick of the games while Dewsbury entertained a Halifax side with one eye on next weekend’s Challenge Cup semi-final against St Helens.

Featherstone were at home to a Rochdale side who are all but relegated  while Barrow travelled to Swinton in the hope of points to keep alive their chances of a drop down a division. The final game was between an increasingly comfortable looking Leigh Centurions and Batley Bulldogs.

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There were no more important round twenty-three fixtures than the basement four pointer between Hull Kingston Rovers and the Huddersfield Giants who had Friday night all to themselves as they went head-to-head to go four points clear of bottom club London Broncos.

KR had a massive win last weekend when they went to Headingley and took the points off the Leeds Rhinos, while the Giants lost out by a narrow four point margin at home to the Catalans Dragons.

KR are looking as though they will be without Matt Parcell for the remainder of the season but Danny Addy was back in the line-up. The Giants had Adam Walne back in contention for the first time since March, and Matty English was also back after being rested last weekend.

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Thursday night rugby was a real mid-table scrap as a Wigan side in the ascendency looked to cement their place in the play-off places while a Wakefield side, seemingly on the wane after a great start to the season, were looking to avoid getting dragged into the relegation dogfight.

The home side were without the injured Tommy Leuluai, skipper Sean O’Loughlin, and Joe Bullock and had an unfamiliar looking bench. Wakefield were without Mason Caton-Brown, replaced in the line up by a semi-fit David Fifita.

Trinity have won just one of their last eight matches but they were victorious when the two sides met in April at the Mobile Rocket Stadium. Wigan had a three win run to defend, but none of the recent victories have been particularly convincing.

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Seven games of three days threw up plenty of surprises in the Betfred Championship as round twenty-one saw two draws, and only two games won by more than fourteen points.

Sheffield got proceedings underway on Friday night with a home game against the Dewsbury Rams while Toulouse Olympique played at Rochdale and Toronto took on Featherstone on Saturday evening.

Batley and York, and Bradford and Swinton faced up on Sunday afternoon while Halifax took on Widnes and Leigh travelled up the M6 to face Barrow.

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Ninth placed Leeds Rhinos looked to make it to three consecutive victories as they welcomed eleventh placed Hull KR to Headingley with the visitors looking for the crucial victory which would lift them level on points with the Rhinos and two points above the London Broncos in the relegation spot.

Hull KR were victorious when the two sides met in early April by a 45-26 scoreline, but the Rhinos took the spoils three weeks later when they won 28-24 after being 28-0 ahead with just thirty minutes remaining.

Sean Lunt would make his second debut for the Rhinos after returning on loan from tonight’s opponents, while Brett Ferres and new signing Rhyse Martin swapped places. It was a Hull KR side packed with, and coached by, ex-Rhinos including; Matt Parcell, Danny McGuire, Mitch Garbutt, Jimmy Keinhorst, and Weller Hauraki.

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Two sides looking for some winning form met at the KCOM Stadium as roller coaster side Hull FC took on a London Broncos side who know that every point is absolutely crucial for their survival in Super League.

Hull FC are still third in the table despite two consecutive defeats, however, a loss tonight could have seen them end the weekend in fifth place. London Broncos were bottom of the table but if they could get the victory then they would go level on points with the Rhinos and the Giants and lift themselves above Hull’s city neighbours KR into eleventh.

FC were without the injured Albert Kelly and Andre Savelio, while Danny Ward selected Sam Davis, Matty Fleming and James Cunningham for his run on side.

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With the State of Origin series poised at all square going into the deciding game at the ANZ Stadium, the anticipation had reached fever pitch ahead of kick-off. Queensland won the opening game in Brisbane by 18-14, but a big reversal eihgteen days ago in Perth saw New South Wales storm to a 38-6 win.

New South Wales had the advantage of momentum, and a partisan crowd, and few could see past the Blues repeating their 2-1 series win from 2018, to make it two series wins in the last two competitions. But history was on Queensland’s side who had a far better record at emerging victorious from deciders.

Queensland’s Kevin Walters had Moses Mbye and debutant Ethan Lowe in his side, while Brad Fittler had tweaked his NSW line up with positional changes meaning a different starting thirteen.

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It was a weekend for the top sides in the Betfred Championship to take a step closer to the play-offs as the top four sides all took on lower placed opposition. High flying York were at Sheffield on Friday night while the runaway league leaders Toronto faced Halifax on Saturday, kicking off an hour before Toulouse welcomed the Bradford Bulls to the south of France.

On Sunday afternoon there was a humdinger of an encounter between fifth placed Featherstone Rovers and Leigh Centurions. Elsewhere Barrow were at Dewsbury, Swinton looked to continue their good run with a home game against Batley and Widnes were at home to bottom club Rochdale.

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Few would argue that the performance of the weekend in the Betfred Championship was the Bradford Bulls sensational away win at second place Toulouse Olympique XIII on Saturday evening. That said, the game of the round, on paper at least, was Featherstone Rovers game against the Leigh Centurions.

The sides came into the game in fourth and fifth places on the league ladder and Leigh knew coming into the game that a win would lift them into second spot in the league, level on points with third placed York City Knights. Featherstone also had everything to play for as a win would see them go above Leigh into fourth spot on points difference.

Everything suggested a full blooded classic encounter.

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After last weeks loss at Headingley an incresingly embattled Catalans Dragons returned to the heat of the south of France to take on Wakefield Trinity as sixth met eighth on the fringe of the play-off places.

Thanks to the Dragons awful points difference, Trinity knew that an away win would lift them into sixth spot and a win by thirty-six points or more would see them above Castleford Tigers and into fifth. The Dragons needed a win for fifth, and to go level on points with fourth placed Wigan Warriors, but without a win in six weeks the most important thing for the home side was getting back on the bike and picking up the victory.

Both sides made changes to their starting line-ups, and the bookies had the Dragons as slight favourites for the win in front of their partisan home crowd.

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