Eyes on another Challenge Cup upset for Featherstone

Featherstone would appear to be the most likely source of a Tetley’s Challenge Cup upset this year.

Rovers created one of the stories of last season’s competition when they eliminated local rivals Castleford, before a brave performance against Wigan in the next round.

They travel to London on Saturday, to face a Broncos side who are yet to win at Twickenham Stoop this season.

Considering the gulf that appears to be increasing between Super League and the Championship in recent years, you would be hard pressed to find any other potential cup upsets.

Instead, Hemel and Gloucestershire should enjoy their days in the spotlight, as they take on Wakefield and Salford respectively in their first year as professionals in the competition.

In fact, the only other potential upset that has been identified involves the all Super League clash between Leeds and Castleford, who will be hoping to feed off the local rivalry, the presence of fans favourite Danny Orr as stand-in head coach, and the fact they’ve already beaten the Rhinos this season.

Super League high-flyers Huddersfield may find it tough going up the hill at Batley, while Catalan have an interesting trip to Hunslet.

Either way, there is guaranteed to be at least four non-Super League sides in the fifth round – the winners of Sheffield v Dewsbury, Halifax v Barrow, York v Toulouse and Whitehaven v Workington.

The Cumbrian derby would have been a great opportunity for the sport to be profiled on national TV in the region, but it continues to be ignored, despite being as much as a heartland and a breeding ground for players as Yorkshire and (the old) Lancashire are.

What is needed though, is for fans to get behind the oldest rugby league competition in the world. A Wembley date is just four games away for every club at this stage.

If you fancy Featherstone to upset London, have a go at some rugby betting, with William Hill.


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