From 2024, every single Super League game will be televised, and supporters will no longer have to moan and groan that ‘the same teams are shown all the time’. But, before the 2023 season ends, we wanted to test if that theory is actually correct, and find out just how many times each Super League club have been televised this year.
As external broadcasters, only Sky Sports and Channel 4 hold the rights to show Super League games live in this country at the moment, with the main television pick for Round 27 being announced over the weekend as the curtain comes down on the regular season.
The RFL also have access to stream games through their own platform, OurLeague, and have done so four times this year.
Every game televised so far, and the one chosen by Sky for Friday night, have been included in our calculations. This also only focuses on Super League games.
We’ve excluded the Challenge Cup as Super League clubs only come into the competition at Round 6, and if you’re in each of the three rounds after that, you’re guaranteed to be shown. Similarly, the play-offs won’t be taken into consideration for this, because if you’re in them, every one of your games will be broadcast.
Super League live on TV
Just as they did last year, Warrington Wolves and Leeds Rhinos opened the 2023 campaign. Live on Sky, the Wolves ran out comfortable winners on home soil, kickstarting a run of eight victories on the bounce to begin the year on a high.
Since then, a further 71 Super League clashes have been shown live, with the one remaining regular season game scheduled for broadcast this coming Friday night.
That will take the tally to 73 games, with free-to-air broadcaster Channel 4 screening seven of those. Their rights include 10 games throughout the year, and in 2022 they showed two play-off clashes plus a re-run of the Grand Final the day after. It’s still not been confirmed how the broadcast schedule looks for the play-offs this year.
Of the 73 combined played and scheduled to date in 2023, Sky have picked 62. That tally includes all six ‘Rivals Round’ fixtures back in April as well as the six played out up in Newcastle at Magic Weekend in June.
With those two rounds of games, all 12 Super League clubs had two guaranteed showings. As mentioned above, four have been shown on OurLeague, including both meetings between Hull FC and Salford. Below, we look at just how many times in total each of the 12 have been picked by UK broadcasters.
Ranked: How many times each Super League club have been on TV in 2023
It probably won’t come as a surprise to many that the clubs recognised as ‘the big four’ in Super League by most are the four who have been shown live the most.
In stark contrast, as they do on the actual ladder, Wakefield prop up the bottom of this list. In the year that they have been relegated, and seen a 25-year stint in Super League brought to an end, just four of their games have been shown. The last of which – in Round 22 – saw Mark Applegarth’s side beaten on home soil by relegation rivals Castleford, putting another nail in their coffin.
Elsewhere, Hull’s trio of appearances on OurLeague have bumped them up the list. The Black and Whites were put on the RFL’s streaming platform home and away against Salford, and at home against high-flying Catalans.
The full list is below.
1. Leeds Rhinos: 18 (includes one on OurLeague)
2. St Helens: 17
= Warrington Wolves: 17 (includes one on OurLeague)
= Wigan Warriors: 17
5. Hull FC: 13 (includes three on OurLeague)
= Salford Red Devils: 13 (includes two on OurLeague)
7. Catalans Dragons: 11 (includes one on OurLeague)
= Hull KR: 11
= Leigh Leopards: 11
10. Castleford Tigers: 9
11. Huddersfield Giants: 7
12. Wakefield Trinity: 4