Leeds kick-off the new Super League season hoping to put their 2016 nightmare behind them

Betfred Super League 2017 season preview and odds

by Abi Moses on Thursday 9th February, 2017


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The day that Rugby League fans have been waiting for has arrived, with the 2017 Betfred Super League set to begin tonight. 

 
The opening game is a classic, as two of the sport's biggest names clash, St Helen's host Leeds Rhinos at the Totally Wicked Stadium. 

 
2015 treble winners, Leeds Rhinos experienced a spectacular fall from grace last season and will be looking to put a disastrous 2016 behind them. After finish the 2015 season as champions, the West Yorkshire outfit found themselves embroiled in a relegation battle in 2016. 

 
Coach, Brian McDermott, is in confident mood ahead of the new season, despite their poor showing last year. He claims "We're a great team. We didn't become a bad team overnight, certain things happened and we didn't play as well. We've got things we need to prove to ourselves. We're not going to circle the wagons, that is an easy option going into the season. There was no need for a major overhaul, just because of what went on." 

 
Fans and experts alike, believe their poor season was due to a host of injuries early on. Leeds won all seven of their qualifiers at the end of the season as key players started to return from injury. 
 

This evening's opponents are fancied by many to improve on last season's fourth spot. St Helens were poor in the first half of the season but came within 80 minutes of 
reaching the Grand Final. A very productive recruitment drive in the close-season has left The Saints looking as strong as they have in a while and should there or thereabouts come the end of the season. 

 
The leading two in the pre-season betting to win Super League's regular season, with most bookmakers are the two sides that contested the Super League Grand Final in 2016. Winners, Wigan, are expected to go one better than their second place finish last season, whilst Warrington's season ended in anti-climax. Warrington lost in both the Challenge Cup final and the Super League Grand Final, despite finishing the regular season as champions, 2016 will be seen as a disappointment. 
 

Here are the current odds to be crowned champion of the  Super League regular season (courtesy of sponsors Betfred): 

 
Wigan - 5/2 
Warrington - 3/1 
St Helens - 9/2 
Hull - 11/2 
Leeds - 9/1 
Castleford - 10/1 
Catalan Dragons - 33/1

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