The good, the bad & the ugly: Pulsating drama, incorrect Sky titles & racist remarks

Drew Darbyshire

Nothing is ever a surprise in rugby league.

The good

How tight is Super League this year? It’s proving to be a magnificent competition and it would be pretty hard to predict how the table is going to be come the end of the regular campaign.

There were two games that went to golden point over the weekend. Morgan Smith landed a one-pointer to help bottom-placed London shock league leaders St Helens 23-22 in the capital, while Peter Mata’utia was Castleford’s hero as the Tigers snatched a 27-26 win against Huddersfield.

The Hull KR-Wigan match at the KCOM Craven Park didn’t go to golden point but a Sam Powell drop-goal was the only thing separating the sides, with the Warriors running out 19-18 winners in Hull.

The Hull FC-Salford (35-32) and Wakefield-Leeds (0-10) were close encounters, while the televised game between Warrington and Catalans (34-4) was a firecracker. What a brilliant, entertaining weekend for Super League. It’s all to play for as we enter towards the business end of the year.

The bad

Sky Sports seem to be having a band time when referring to the rugby league games they are broadcasting this year. It appears whoever titles them doesn’t know it is rugby league that is being shown.

On Saturday, the Warrington-Catalans game was on the Sky listings as ‘Super Rugby Union’. My dad – who is a Wigan fan but likes to watch neutral games – wanted to watch the match and flicked through the channels but didn’t think it was on. When I got home from covering the game, I explained to him that it was on Sky Sports and he said he actually saw the ‘Super Rugby Union’ title but didn’t click on it due him thinking it was a union match. I bet this happened to quite a few people!

And on Sunday, Sky still hadn’t learnt their lesson. The Championship match between Swinton and Toronto was titled ‘Championship League Rugby’. It was close, but still no cigar. It makes it seem as though it was a rugby union match in the Championship. Why can’t they get it right?

Or is clickbait so more people click on it in the thought that it is a rugby union game? They only have to be on the channel for three seconds or more for it to be classed as a view, so they could potentially be making more money.

The ugly

“Do they allow black people in Swinton?”

Toronto owner David Argyle’s comment towards Swinton forward Jose Kenga on April 27 was bang out of order. It was an utterly racist comment which should be dealt with in the highest regard by the Rugby Football League.

There doesn’t actually seem to be much of a case for an investigation though, with Argyle having already admitted using those words towards the Lions star. Really, it’s just the punishment that the RFL need to determine now.

Argyle has fired himself as chairman and chief executive of the Wolfpack with immediate effect, so fair play to him in some respects for owning up to it straight away, but it doesn’t make what he said any easier for Kenga. It was one of the stupidest comments I’ve heard for some time. Let’s hope the incident doesn’t reflect severely on the Wolfpack though, because an individuals’ views doesn’t represent a whole club or its players and staff.

Kenga has accepted Argyle’s apology and it needs to be dealt with swiftly by the RFL. Let this be a big lesson to everyone in the sport, but also in society as well.

More on site

Sean Long leaves St Helens for rugby union

Jordan Thompson returns to Leigh

Castleford land Tyla Hepi