The Leeds Rhinos have defeated the Warrington Wolves 26-18 to take out yet another Super League title.
The game wasn’t all that great in terms of quality but English fans seemed to enjoy it. Both teams had their chances to go on and win the game but at the end of the day Leeds experience in big games got the home.
At times Warrington looked pretty good but a number of their key players simply didn’t turn up when it mattered most. Lee Briers was abysmal in a career defining game while Michael Monaghan had zero impact on the match.
For Leeds, they kept things pretty simple. It was clear they saw weaknesses out wide in the Wire defense and they pushed the ball out there at every chance they got.
This game will probably be remembered for news that came through after the game that Warrington forward Paul Wood ruptured a testicle in the opening minutes of the match and played on. That night he underwent surgery to remove the injured testicle in what must be the ultimate sacrifice to a losing Grand Final effort.
You have to hand it to the Rhinos, they have dominated Super League over the a long time now. Over the last two years they haven’t even played all that well and they have still managed to pull off Grand Final wins.
I don’t think it is a coincidence that they are the only team in northern England based in a major city and drawing on a very large area to draw fans, players and sponsors from. They have massive advantages over many other clubs, not through any underhand dealings, that is just the way things have turned out for them.
In fact if you look at the history of Super League, for most of its history it has been dominated by Leeds and Bradford. Sure Bradford were run into the ground but both teams have shown that with half decent management teams based in large population bases can not just do well in Super League, that can completely dominate.
The 2012 Super League season has been the worst I have seen. The quality of the games played were dreadful, we had the Bradford Bulls going bust and then the drawn out debacle regarding their ownership situation, we saw the ridiculous Stobart deal that saw no money what so ever being paid to the game spiked early and we will be leading into an international series that has been hastily thrown together at the last moment that will see England playing in front of tiny crowds.
All of this is very disappointing to see. I want to see Rugby League in Great Britain in thriving. Right now things are going in the other direction, the game in Great Britain is dying.
Unless something changes Super League would be a semi professional competition in a few years time.
A well known Rugby League writer, League Freak has established a reputation among supporters of the game for his fearless commentary and unmatched insight. With a reach that spans both sides of the globe, League Freak has produced an independent network that allows him to distribute content to his many thousands of followers. He is the owner and main author of LeagueFreak.com