Jeff Dickinson-Fox reviews the campaign which saw Melbourne Storm crowned premiers in 2017.
4 days ago
St Helens 68
Tries: Gardner 4, Puletua, Flannery, Emmitt, Moore, Eastmond, Gidley, Lomax, Roby, Dixon
Goals: Eastmond 5, Lomax 3
Hull KR 12
Tries: Welham, Newton
Goals: Dobson 2
St Helens ran in 13-tries as they demolished Hull KR for the second time this season.
After crushing their same opponents at Murrayfield 54-0 three weeks ago, St Helens once again handed out another beating.
Ade Gardner showed his strength to open the scoring for Saints, but Rovers hit back and took the lead through Chris Welham after he took Mick Dobson's kick. Tony Puletua and Gardner added other scores as the hosts moved into a 16-6 lead.
In the last ten minutes of the half Hull KR had Ben Cockayne sin-binned for a late tackle and Ben Fisher joined him for a series of high tackles. St Helens capitalised and added further scores from Chris Flannery and young prop Jake Emmitt.
The second half was one-way traffic as Saints moved through the gears to add eight more tries. Ade Gardner went on to score four with Scott Moore, Kyle Eastmond and Matt Gidley all getting on the score-sheet as the hosts kept the pressure on league leaders Wigan.
Clint Newton added a consolation for Rovers as they suffered a fourth away defeat on the bounce where they have conceded more than forty points.
Tries: Youngquest, Hanbury, Chan, Witt, Lupton
Goals: Witt 3
Wigan Warriors 46
Tries: O'Loughlin, Pryce 4, Gleeson 2, Richards
Goals: Richards 7
Wigan Warriors kept up their good form by running out convincing winners over Crusaders at the Racecourse Ground in Wrexham.
The visitors showed their intent from the start as they dominated the opening quarter to open up a 28-0 lead. Skipper Sean O'Loughlin latched on to a grubber kick to open the scoring on two minutes. Wigner Karl Pryce helped himself to a hat-trick and the fifth score came from Martin Gleeson.
Nick Youngquest grounded the ball in the corner to give Crusaders some hope.
After the break Rhys Hanbury scored another for the Welsh-side before Pat Richards increased the Warriors lead with a dazzling 30-metre run. Pryce added his fourth of the game before the Crusaders gave the scoreboard a change of tune with tries from Jason Chan, Peter Lupton and Michael Witt.
The game was made safe for Wigan as centre Gleeson added his second of the night. Richards, the league's leading scorer, landed the conversion for an 18-point individual haul.
Catalans Dragons 14
Tries: Bosc 2
Goals: Bosc 3
Salford City Reds 22
Tries: Fitzpatrick, Littler, Leuluai
Goals: Holdsworth 5
Salford City Reds claimed a second straight victory in Perpignan as they defeated bottom of the table Catalans Dragons.
After last week's stunning win over St Helens, the City Reds continued where they left off as they led 12-0 after six minutes. Stuart Littler opened the scoring with full-back Karl Fitzpatrick adding the other.
In the last minutes of the first half French stand-off Thomas Bosc added a penalty goal as the hosts trailed 12-2 at the break.
Phillip Leuluai scored early in the second half as Salford moved into a commanding lead. Led by the inspirational Bosc who helped himself to a double the Dragons made better fist of it and clawed themselves back into the game.
However, in the last ten minutes the hosts had Gregory Mounis shown a red card for a spear tackle and Daniel Holdsworth made sure that Salford took the points home, by adding a penalty goal.
This defeat for Catalans leaves them four points adrift at the bottom of Engage Super League table.
Warrington Wolves 36
Tries: Morley, Bridge, Riley, Hicks 2, King, Wood
Goals: Bridge 4
Huddersfield Giants 20
Tries: Robinson, Cudjoe 2, Lolesi
Goals: B. Hodgson 2
Warrington Wolves got back to winning ways by surviving a Huddersfield Giants comeback at H.J. Stadium.
After losing 60-4 two weeks ago to Warrington in the Challenge Cup, the Giants took the early lead through Luke Robinson after the hosts were reduced to 12-men inside the first minute when Chris Riley was awarded a yellow card for a professional foul.
Warrington got themselves back into the game thanks to a close range effort from skipper Adrian Morley. The Wolves went further ahead with scores from Chris Bridge and Riley. Leroy Cudjoe raced 80-metres to get Huddersfield within one score but a try from Chris Hicks just before the break gave the hosts a 20-10 lead.
Hicks added his second soon after the restart and Huddersfield had Lee Gilmour put in the sin-bin for a heavy challenge on Morley. Matt King stretched the Wolves clear as he scored in the corner.
The Giants showed some pride by scoring two quick-fire tries from Jamal Lolesi and Cudjoe. However, a late effort from Paul Wood made the game safe as Warrington remained second.
Castleford Tigers 26
Tries: Jones, Arundel, Wainwright 2, Chase
Goals: Westerman 3
Hull FC 34
Tries: Yeaman, Tansey, Long, Briscoe, Fitzgibbon, O'Meley
Goals: Tickle 5
Hull FC turned in a strong second half performance to claim a win over Castleford Tigers at the Jungle.
Played in hot conditions , 33 year old scrum-half Sean Long was in fine form as he set up Kirk Yeaman and Jordan Tansey to give the Black and Whites an early 10-0 lead.
As Hull made some errors the Tigers capitalised and got back into the game. Stuart Jones and Joe Arundel got on the score-sheet with Michael Wainwright going over after the half time hooter to give Castleford a 16-10 lead.
Hull took control in the second half and won the game by scoring 24 consecutive points. Long raced 40-metres to get the visitors on their way. Paul McShane made a dart to send Tom Briscoe in and Craig Fitzgibbon and Michael O'Meley also got on the score-sheet as the Black and White opened up a 34-16 lead.
Two late tries for the Tigers from Rangi Chase and a second for Wainwright were not enough as Hull moved up to fourth.
Wakefield Wildcats 54
Tries: George 2, Gleeson 2, Obst 2, Henderson, Blanch, Demetriou, Cooke
Goals: Cooke 7
Harlequins RL 12
Tries: Clubb, Dorn
Goals: Orr 2
Wakefield Wildcats put to an end their six match losing streak by dishing out a hammering to Harlequins RL at Hearwell Stadium Belle Vue.
Two tries in four minutes put the hosts in control. Paul Cooke's high kick to the left corner was caught and grounded by Luke George and then Paul Johnson's offload sent Gleeson over the line. Sam Obst started and finished the Wildcats third try.
Just before the break Tony Clubb found a gap in the defence to give Quins some hope as they trailed 18-6.
Wakefield took Harlequins apart in the second half to run in 7 tries. Kevin Henderson added an early try after the restart and Ireland winger Damien Blanch raced 80-metres to score.
Jason Demetriou, George, Obst and Cooke all went over as the Wildcats went past the fifty point barrier. Luke Dorn's last-minute effort, which Orr converted, was little consolation for the visitors who were completely out played.
Bradford Bulls 12
Tries: Whitehead, Platt
Goals: Sykes 2
Leeds Rhinos 26
Tries: McGuire 3, Senior, Delaney
Goals: Sinfield 3
Leeds Rhinos claimed the bragging rights by defeating arch rivals Bradford Bulls at Grattan Stadium Odsal.
Despite missing regular half-backs Matt Orford and Brett Kearney, the Bulls took an early lead thorough Elliott Whitehead who capitalised on Lee Smith's error in not putting the ball dead in goal. Danny McGuire finished off a move to get Leeds on terms. Michael Platt spun out of a tackle to score underneath the posts as Bradford took a 10-4 lead.
However, just before the break McGuire and Keith Senior went over to give the visitors a narrow 14-12 interval lead.
In the second half the Rhinos prevented the Bulls from scoring and won the game with two more tries. Brett Delaney made the most of Rikki Sherriffe's mistake and McGuire completed his hat-trick by taking a smart offload from Greg Eastwood on halfway before side stepping the fullback.
This win for Leeds moves them up to fifth and within touching distance of the top four.