The Super League season has reached midway and we are ready for a riveting few months. St Helens have been the best team in the competition so far, there is no doubt about that, but such as the Catalans Dragons, Wigan Warriors and Huddersfield Giants are not far behind.
There were some great artists there, but some players may have surprised the fans with their demonstrations as well. Here, Rugby League Live will take a look at some of the surprises of the year so far.
Lolohea found a new life in the Super League after moving to the Huddersfield Giants out of season. The Tonga national team has always been able to produce magical moments, but in the Salford Red Devils T-shirt he sometimes struggled for consistency.
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Lolohea has undoubtedly been one of the best players in the competition since handing me the reins of extreme defender Ian Watson at John Smith’s Stadium. Tonga’s national team has set 17 attempts this season, with only Jake Connor successful, and with 47 unsuccessful attempts he is one of the strongest runners of the ball.
He will also have the opportunity to win some silver in the weekend when he will compete in the Challenge Cup final against the Wigan Warriors.
Few Super League fans, if any, knew of Joe Lovodu before Hull FC announced his signature in October. The hooker played part-time for the South Sydney Rabbitohs’ NSW Cup, but Black and Whites handed him a one-year contract and was asked to show up in the Northern Hemisphere.
Prove that he has, because Lovodua is considered a key member of Brett Hodgson’s party and one of the signatures of the year. This year, Fiji made 15 appearances in all competitions, recorded five attempts, and after demonstrating its versatility, these attempts come from many positions.
Thewlis was no stranger to the first Warrington Wolves before this season, playing 14 games in 2021. However, the 20-year-old seems to be able to do the job as a defender for Daryl Powell himself, because he took his chance to shine. with both hands.
He missed a fight with St Helens last week due to a knee injury, but after the club started the previous seven games as a defender, it is clear that he has an important role to play at Halliwell Jones Stadium. Thewlis also showed that he wants to try when he has scored for the Wolves in all competitions this season.
Just as he is with Lolohe, Watson seems to get the best of Russell, who has won a place in the Giants halves. He missed just one Super League game this season, and his creativity and football game were extremely important for Huddersfield, who is currently knocking on the door of the Super League’s top three.
Russell has a lot of competition in the club for a place in the middle with Will Pryce, Theo Fages and Jack Cogger, but this year he is holding on and making a name for himself.
Super League fans had high expectations of Field when he first arrived in England, but the injury ensured that his first year in the competition was not forgotten. As the new season approached, Field seemed to be on the radar in discussions about those to watch and the Man of Steel race.
However, in the middle, he has seven points at the top of the Man of Steel rankings when he recorded 14 attempts and won the Wigan Warriors from many holes. It is third in the rankings of measured meters, second in terms of overcoming outages, and no one has come close to its 20 clean runs.
So far he has been the star of the season, there is no doubt about that.
Senior was out of the game in Huddersfield last year and subsequently spent a season hosting in Wakefield Trinity, where he recorded six attempts in 16 games. However, the 22-year-old was a key man under Watson this time, appeared in all but one Super League match and helped the Giants to the Cup final.
The senior, who finds himself in a battle for a place in the Giants with his twin Louis, scored seven this year, with his brace proving to be decisive last year against Toulouse Olympique. Knights coach Paul Anderson overlooked him earlier this month, which annoyed Watson, but if he continues on his current trajectory, he will almost certainly catch the attention of these selectors.
To say that Halton entered the top competition smoothly would be an understatement. The back rower was one of the most impressive Hull KR players this year, as he is still rising fast in the rugby league rankings.
Halton played for the Leigh Miners Rangers just four years ago, but after capturing the Swinton Lions and Featherstone Rovers, he now does so at the highest level. The 25-year-old has missed about a month of the season due to an ankle injury, but is back and will be interested in turning the Robins over with his performances in the package.
Cross is another who has gone through rugby league levels in recent years, advanced from the Rochdale Hornets to the Salford Red Devils and stopped at Barrow and Widnes Vikings along the way. The center arrived at AJ Bell Stadium after scoring 17 attempts for the Vikings last year and this year he managed to get over four in the Super League, most recently winning the Castleford Tigers.
He only signed a one-year contract with Paul Rowley, but the club quickly decided to tie him up by the end of next season, and now they seem to have discovered a real gem.