Stobart deal serves up a paying sponsor

I haven’t had a lot of time for Rugby League per se this week, mainly because I’ve been spending most of it sorting out the Love Rugby League server and the issues the trouble left us. But here I am looking forward to another weekend of Super League and it’s set to be just as chilly as the last by the looks of it, still Widnes are playing away so nobody has to brave the iPitch, just some good old fashioned frozen solid mud and grass.

In a slight bit of I told you so from last week the positive end of the Stobart sponsorship of Super League came to light as the RFL announced a six figure deal with Heinz Big Soup, we just need a bread sponsor to go with it, no one has soup without bread, what kind of meal is that? Even if companies are just paying to have their logo join Hep Cahill on the back of a Stobart wagon it doesn’t really matter if the money goes into the RFL’s coffers.

It does turn out that one club have their money making merchandising sorted this year, you can get your name on a lovely piece of Widnes Vikings merchandise such as nice Vikings logo T-Shirt. At least they found something for the work experience lad to do – and £19.99, that must be a hell of a lot of profit for ironing on a print out.

Whilst I missed the weekend’s coverage on Sky I did catch the Super League Show in it’s new Monday night slot. It’s great to have a guaranteed slot and hopefully it’ll mean that the BBC are starting to put a little effort in. My only complaint is the set, it looks a little bare, like it’s missing some of the furniture. But then we don’t watch it for the chairs.

The Super League Show was my second late night in a row (yes 12:30 is a late night!) having watched the Super Bowl the night before. Having explained to my wife that the Super Bowl wasn’t a ten pin bowling competition I packed her off to bed and sat and watched, well mostly Mark Chapman, until 3 in the morning. It just highlights how tough the guys who play rugby league are, and also got some great publicity from the likes of Wayne Rooney tweeting his affirmation that rugby league is better than the stop start of American Football. To borrow a quote from Giles from Buffy the vampire slayer “I just think it’s rather odd that a nation that prides itself on its virility should feel compelled to strap on forty pounds of protective gear just in order to play rugby.“

And that is all I have for you this week ladies and gentlemen, well apart from my tips which last week afforded me 4 out of 7, or 6 I prefer not to count draws. The draw incidentally scuppered a few peoples magnificent 7 tips, with some people getting 6/7 tips, though I’ve no idea if they put on the tenner!

But this weekend looks a little something like this – maybe:

St Helens 34 – 8 Salford

Wigan 12 – 18 Leeds

Catalan 38 – 12 Hull

Castleford 18 – 8 Bradford

Huddersfield 36 – 8 Widnes

Wakefield 12 – 20 Hull KR

Warrington 30 – 6 London

Feel free to come back and laugh at these tips after the weekend.

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