The good, the bad & the ugly: Connor incredible, relegation battle & Wardle injury

Drew Darbyshire

We go through the highs and lows over the last week in rugby league.

The good

Jake Connor produced one of the best individual performances we’ve seen this year on Thursday night as Hull FC won 31-18 against Castleford at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle.

The 24-year-old played in the centres for the Black and Whites and torn the Tigers to pieces at times with his explosive footwork, without forgetting to mention an incredible offload which led to an Albert Kelly try.

Connor is doing himself no harm in catching the eye of Great Britain coach Wayne Bennett, who is in the UK this week. Connor can play centre, half-back, wing or full-back and has got to be a must for the Lions squad later this year.

The bad

Leeds have well and truly been sucked into a relegation battle – if they already weren’t in one before last weekend’s round of Super League fixtures.

The Rhinos lost 23-14 to seventh-placed Wigan at Emerald Headingley on Friday night, while the teams below them – Hull KR and London – both picked up victories on the weekend against Warrington and Catalans respectively.

Leeds, Hull KR and London are now joint bottom of the Super League ladder on 12 points. Ninth-placed Huddersfield are on 14 points, while Wakefield, Wigan and Salford sit on 16 points. What an exciting competition Super League is this year. It’s all to play for at both ends of the table.

The ugly

Huddersfield have been dealt an injury blow after learning that back-rower Joe Wardle faces six weeks on the sidelines after needing an operation on a thumb problem.

The Scotland international will undergo surgery this week but it comes as a huge blow for the Giants, with Wardle being a standout forward for Simon Woolford’s side this year.

Woolford said: “He broke his thumb in the second half of the Castleford game. We hoped it was just bruising or a minor issue, but the specialist said he’d need an op.” Let’s hope Wardle has a speedy recovery.

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