We’re heading for the 16th edition of Magic Weekend as an entire round of Super League fixtures is played at St James’ Park in Newcastle.
It is the seventh time the annual event has been played at the home of Newcastle United, which has become its adopted home over the past decade.
Apart from the 2019 at Anfield, every Magic Weekend since 2015 has been played there.
Previous venues include the Etihad Stadium in Manchester and Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, which both hosted the event three times, while it was twice staged at Murrayfield in Edinburgh.
Magic Weekend has always added an extra fixture to the calendar, contributing to the loop fixtures in recent years.
When the league was at 14 teams, it was simply the 27th fixture after each team had played home and away against each other, while during the Super 8s era it was similar – the 23rd game as the 12 teams played each other home and away too before the split.
Players have compared the event to the feeling of a cup final.
The selection of fixtures has differed over the years too – from derby matches to rivalries, and now to something that’s more connected to where teams finished in Super League in the previous season.
There is an argument to say that it skews the fixture list, and provides some unfair advantages to certain teams.
The schedule may well contribute to who has the best record at Magic Weekend, but we’ve listed them here from 1-12.
1. Huddersfield Giants
Given their current predicament, Huddersfield could do with continuing their fine record at Magic Weekend though they will do at tough, as they face champions St Helens.
The Giants are to date the only team to have won 10 games at the Magic Weekend, and they’ll be desperate for two points to help keep them in touch with the play-off race.
Despite it only being the 14th round of the season, this is the third time Huddersfield have been scheduled to face St Helens – albeit the first meeting in round one was postponed due to Saints’ involvement in the World Club Challenge.
Huddersfield have beaten St Helens at Magic Weekend before, winning 48-20 in Newcastle in 2016.
As well as their 10 wins, which has included victories over Warrington, St Helens, Catalans and Hull, the Giants drew 22-all with the Dragons in 2015.
That means they have earned 21 competition points at the event to date.
Magic results: Wakefield W36-12, Warrington L34-36, Crusaders W40-16, Wigan L10-28, Warrington W28-18, Salford L34-38, Bradford W42-6, Bradford W54-16, Catalans D22-22, St Helens W48-20, Catalans W18-10, Wakefield W25-22, Hull W55-2, Wakefield L18-32, Salford W30-18
Magic record: Won 10, Drawn 1, Lost 4, Win Percentage 66.66%, Points 21
2. Castleford Tigers
Another club that could do with the points at this year’s Magic Weekend is Castleford, who are searching for their 10th win at the event.
The Tigers missed the inaugural event in 2007 as they were playing in National League 1, but since their return to Super League, have won nine times which gives them the second best win percentage.
Three of their five losses came in their first five Magic Weekends, and while some will point to the fact they have played Wakefield six times at Magic, they have registered wins over Catalans, Warrington and Leeds.
It’s the Rhinos they come up against this weekend, having narrowly lost to them last year. They beat the Rhinos in successive years in Newcastle in 2017 and 2018.
Magic results: Wakefield L16-54, Hull L16-24, Catalans W34-18, Wakefield W40-20, Wakefield L26-32, Wakefield W48-24, Wakefield W50-12, Wakefield W56-16, Warrington W34-14, Leeds W29-18, Leeds W38-10, St Helens L16-36, Salford W29-18, Leeds L24-30
Magic record: Won 9, Lost 5, Win Percentage 64.28%, Points 18
3. Warrington Wolves
While Warrington have earned more points at Magic Weekend than Castleford in second, they have of course played one game more at the event.
Their coach Daryl Powell boasts a fine record at the event too, winning eight of nine games as a head coach.
Most of them were with Castleford, but he recorded victory in his first game at Magic as Warrington boss against Catalans last year.
They face Hull FC on Sunday looking for their fourth successive Magic Weekend win.
Magic results: Salford W50-18, Huddersfield W36-34, Hull KR L28-36, Salford W68-16, Huddersfield L18-28, Widnes W68-4, St Helens W48-22, St Helens W41-24, St Helens L16-20, Castleford L14-34, Wigan D24-24, Wigan L10-38, Wigan W26-14, Wigan W10-6, Catalans W36-10
Magic record: Won 9, Drawn 1, Lost 5, Win Percentage 60%, Points 19
4. Leeds Rhinos
Remarkably, Leeds won at the first six Magic Weekends but then went on the longest losing run in Magic history, as they lost their next six.
They have won in each of the last three years, albeit narrowly against London (2019) and Hull (2021) before beating Castleford, their opponents this year too, 30-24 last season.
Their injury-hit squad will be looking to avenge a surprise defeat suffered away at Castleford earlier in the season, with the competition points being crucial given the number of teams locked in battle for the top six spots.
Magic results: Bradford W42-38, Bradford W40-26, Catalans W32-16, Wakefield W34-30, Bradford W32-28, Bradford W37-22, Wigan L16-20, Wigan L14-18, Wigan L12-27, Wigan L8-40, Castleford L18-29, Castleford L10-38, London W24-22, Hull W25-24, Castleford W30-24
Magic record: Won 9, Lost 6, Win Percentage 60%, Points 18
5. Hull KR
You could argue that the Hull clubs have it hardest at Magic Weekend given the number of derby matches they have faced over the years.
The Robins certainly weren’t complaining in the early years though, as they beat their arch rivals on each of the first five occasions they faced them at Magic Weekend. That was part of a run of six wins in their first seven Magic Weekends.
The Airlie Birds have turned the tide in recent years though, winning the last four meetings at Magic, with two wins for Hull KR over Salford and Leigh in amongst that run.
Like Castleford, Hull KR have missed one Magic Weekend to date – the 2017 edition when they were playing in the Championship.
Magic results: Hull W14-10, Hull W22-17, Warrington W36-28, St Helens L0-54, Hull W34-22, Hull W32-30, Hull L16-22, Hull W38-24, Hull L20-46, Hull L16-28, Hull L22-34, Salford W22-20, Leigh W44-6, Hull L28-34
Magic record: Won 8, Lost 6, Win Percentage 57.14%, Points 16
6. Wigan Warriors
No team has had it tougher at Magic Weekend than Wigan Warriors.
All but one of their 15 games at Magic Weekend have been against Leeds, St Helens or Warrington, and with that in mind, they’ve done well to make it in to the top six on this list.
They are the only club that has drawn two games at Magic, against St Helens in 2011 and Warrington in 2017.
This year they’ve managed to avoid those three clubs, as well as Huddersfield who are the only other team they have faced at Magic, and will instead take on Catalans in a humdinger between the sides currently second and third in Super League.
Magic results: St Helens L18-34, St Helens L16-57, St Helens W38-18, Huddersfield W28-10, St Helens D16-16, St Helens W42-16, Leeds W20-16, Leeds W18-14, Leeds W27-12, Leeds W40-8, Warrington D24-24, Warrington W38-10, Warrington L14-26, Warrington L6-10, St Helens L18-20
Magic record: Won 8, Drawn 2, Lost 5, Win Percentage 53.33%, Points 18
7. St Helens
The fixture scheduling was tough on St Helens before the recent change to it being based on league positions. In the first nine Magic Weekends, they faced either Warrington or Wigan on eight occasions.
In recent years, they have taken on Huddersfield, Hull, Castleford and Catalans, before beating Wigan 20-18 last season.
Their dramatic defeat to Catalans in 2021 was one of the best games in Magic Weekend history, and was a deciding factor in the race for the League Leaders’ Shield that year.
In 2023, Saints go up against Huddersfield – who they lost to in 2016 – with both sides eager for competition points in the fight for the play-offs.
Magic results: Wigan W34-18, Wigan W57-16, Wigan L18-38, Hull KR W54-0, Wigan D16-16, Wigan L16-42, Warrington L22-48, Warrington L24-41, Warrington W20-16, Huddersfield L20-48, Hull W45-0, Widnes W38-18, Castleford W36-16, Catalans L30-31, Wigan W20-18
Magic record: Won 8, Drawn 1, Lost 6, Win Percentage 53.33%, Points 17
8. Catalans Dragons
Catalans have faced eight different clubs in their 15 years at Magic Weekend, and some fans were disappointed that the opportunity was missed to pit them against Toulouse in an all-French clash last year.
Of course, the formula for selecting the fixtures is now based on league position, which has pit them up against Wigan in 2023.
A dramatic win over St Helens in 2021 was pivotal to them finishing top of the league, and that was their third win in a row at Magic before last year’s disappointing defeat to Warrington.
Magic results: Harlequins L28-32, Harlequins W18-16, Leeds L16-32, Castleford L18-34, Harlequins L4-11, London W42-18, London W46-18, London W24-22, Huddersfield D22-22, Wakefield L25-24, Huddersfield L10-18, Salford W26-12, Wakefield W25-18, St Helens W31-30, Warrington L10-36
Magic record: Won 7, Drawn 1, Lost 7, Win Percentage 46.66%, Points 15
9. Hull FC
Hull FC fans could have been forgiven for wanting to see the back of Magic Weekend.
They have suffered two embarrassments at the weekend, the 55-2 defeat to Huddersfield at Anfield and a 45-0 pasting by St Helens two years previous.
But they have won four in a row against Hull KR, after losing their first four Magic Weekend derbies, including a 34-28 win last year which came following a one point loss to Leeds in 2021.
It is Tony Smith’s first Magic Weekend in charge of the Airlie Birds, and they take on one of his former clubs Warrington in what is a first Magic Weekend meeting between two of the better supported clubs.
Magic results: Hull KR L10-14, Hull KR L17-22, Castleford W24-16, Harlequins L8-25, Hull KR L22-34, Hull KR L30-32, Hull KR W22-16, Hull KR L24-38, Hull KR W46-20, Hull KR W28-16, St Helens L0-45, Hull KR W34-22, Huddersfield L2-55, Leeds L24-25, Hull KR W34-28
Magic record: Won 6, Lost 9, Win Percentage 40%, Points 12
10. Wakefield Trinity
Wakefield have the worst record of the clubs who have played in all 15 previous editions of Magic Weekend, winning on five occasions.
They were beaten by Toulouse in the opening game last year, though did beat Huddersfield in 2021.
After suffering 13 straight losses in Super League this season, they are desperate for a win and though it would be a big surprise if they managed it, maybe the big occasion might provide a welcome boost.
Magic results: Huddersfield L12-36, Castleford W54-16, Bradford L16-32, Leeds L30-34, Castleford L20-40, Castleford W32-26, Castleford L24-48, Castleford L12-50, Castleford L16-56, Catalans W25-24, Widnes W34-12, Huddersfield L22-25, Catalans L18-25, Huddersfield W32-18, Toulouse L28-38
Magic record: Won 5, Lost 10, Win Percentage 33.33%, Points 10
11. Salford Red Devils
Salford have faced nine different opponents at Magic Weekend, including being the only team beaten by Widnes at the event.
They missed the second ever Magic Weekend following their relegation the previous year, but have been ever presents since.
But they have recorded just four wins from 14 – two against Widnes, one against Huddersfield and another against Leigh, which was their last victory at Magic and was back in 2017.
They have suffered four straight defeats in the last four years to four different clubs – they’ll be looking to break that duck against Hull KR, who beat them 22-20 in 2019.
Magic results: Warrington L18-50, Harlequins L16-24, Warrington L16-68, Crusaders L12-42, Huddersfield W38-34, Widnes W28-22, Widnes L24-30, Widnes L16-38, Widnes W18-12, Leigh W36-22, Catalans L12-26, Hull KR L20-22, Castleford L18-29, Huddersfield L18-30
Magic record: Won 4, Lost 10, Win Percentage 28.57%, Points 8
12. Leigh Leopards
It’s only a third Magic Weekend for Leigh, who have by far their best chance of breaking their duck as they take on bottom club Wakefield.
On their previous two visits to Newcastle in 2017 and 2021, they have been beaten by Salford and Hull KR.
A win would put them 18 points clear of Trinity, with just 26 points left to play for as their focus seems very much on making the play-offs rather than avoiding relegation.
Leigh are to date the only club to have played at Magic Weekend and never won a match.
Magic results: Salford L22-36, Hull KR L6-44
Magic record: Lost 2, Win Percentage 0%, Points 0
There are five other clubs who have featured at Magic Weekend since its inception.
Toulouse won on their only experience in Super League at the event – they did play against Toronto in a Championship league match in 2018 where they were beaten – giving them a 100% record.
Of the other four, Crusaders boast the best win percentage with 66.66% – which would put them second in the above list. Albeit they are advantaged by the fact they only played on three occasions, winning twice.
London Broncos won half of their eight games at Magic Weekend, while Widnes only managed two wins in seven, which would put them level with Salford.
Bradford won just one of their eight matches at Magic Weekend.