PREVIEW 🔍 Robert Crosby looks at what to expect in Sunday night's second State of Origin clash.
9 hours ago
The RFL has issued the Fixture list for the 2018 Betfred Super League season.
The season is set to open with Warrington hosting 2017 champions Leeds at Halliwell Jones Stadium, kicking off on Thursday February 1 at 7:45pm local time in the UK.
Other opening round matches see Hull host Huddersfield on the same evening, then three matches on Friday night - Salford host Wigan at 7:30pm before St Helens face off with League Leaders Shield winners Castleford, and Hull KR get a home game to open their return season to the top flight when they host Wakefield at 8pm.
Sunday afternoon sees one match to round out the opening weekend with Widnes hosting Catalans.
Other features of the fixture include the first Australian fixture played as part of Round 2, where Wigan will play Hull FC in Wollongong, just over an hour south of Sydney. That match will take place at 7:45pm on Saturday night Sydney time, which translates to 8:45am the same morning back in the UK.
The first of three Grand Final re-matches happens in Round 7 on March 23 with Leeds hosting Castleford at Emerald Headingley Stadium, with the Tigers hosting the return bout on Sunday July 8 at Wheldon Road. The third clash will be played on neutral ground as part of the Magic Weekend.
Yes - the annual Magic Weekend is once again on at Newcastle's St. James' Park in England's north, with two days of action taking place on May 19 and 20. Saturday sees Widnes host St Helens, Wigan v Warrington and the Grand Final re-match, then on Sunday Salford host Catalans, Wakefield v Huddersfield and finished with a Hull derby.
Round 23 wraps up on July 29 with the Challenge Cup to bridge the weekend between the end of the regular season and the seven rounds of Super 8's - with the Challenge Cup Final wedged in the middle of those Super 8's rounds.
The Grand Final is scheduled for October 13, a week later than previous seasons.
Sky Sports UK will continue to show two games a week and following feedback from supporters, media and clubs, there will now be an earlier kick-off time of 7.45pm for all televised Thursday and Friday night matches.