After a superb individual display, Wigan Warriors’ Bevan French claimed the three Steve Prescott Man of Steel points from the decorated voting panel, one of the six recipients of the top mark after the opening round of Super League action.
Warriors’ French started at full-back and his quick feet saw him score the Cherry and Whites’ first try of the season as they defeated Warrington Wolves 16-10 at the DW Stadium. Throw in an assist for Liam Marshall’s try which, ultimately, proved to be the match-winner and the former Parramatta Eels man was a worthy recipient of the three points.
The following night saw Hull KR hammer Wakefield Trinity as Tony Smith’s new-look team hit the ground running but it wasn’t a new face who was awarded the points with 2013 Dream Teamer Ben Crooks taking the full three following his hat-trick in a 30-12 victory for the Robins. Friday also saw St Helens face Salford Red Devils in a re-run of last season’s Grand Final but there was no doubt who looked more likely to return to Old Trafford again this year as Kristian Woolf’s new side hammered the Red Devils 48-8 with star half-back Jonny Lomax dominating proceedings and taking the three points.
Despite some impressive recruitment in the off-season, Catalans Dragons couldn’t get their season started with a win as they fell to an Aidan Sezer-inspired Huddersfield Giants in Perpignan and, after a sixteen point haul, the former Canberra man got his start to Super League life off with the three Man of Steel points. With a hand in all good things the Giants did on the night, Sezer will be central to any success Simon Woolford’s men may have this year.
The final two matches of the opening took round on the same pitch with Castleford and Hull FC beating Toronto and Leeds respectively. Despite going behind, Daryl Powell’s men ultimately came out on top against the Wolfpack with half-back Jake Trueman the recipient of the three points, putting the disappointment of not featuring on last year’s Great Britain tour behind him. Following that match, Lee Radford’s men showed what all the hype surrounding the Airlie Birds is about this year as they recorded their biggest victory over the Rhinos at Headingley in thirty six years, recording a 4-30 victory. After a gluttony of new recruits, notably to their pack, it was a man who joined midway through 2019 who took the points as Andre Savelio headed back to Humberside after starting the season with two assists to his name.
Wigan 16-10 Warrington: Bevan French (3), Liam Farrell (2) & Matty Ashton (1).
Hull KR 30-12 Wakefield: Ben Crooks (3), Matty Storton (2) & Adam Quinlan (1).
St Helens 48-8 Salford: Jonny Lomax (3), Alex Walmsley (2) & Zeb Taia (1).
Catalans 12-32 Huddersfield: Aidan Sezer (3), Kenny Edwards (2) & Sam Kasiano (1).
Toronto 10-28 Castleford: Jake Trueman (3), Paul McShane (2) & Hakim Miloudi (1).
Leeds 4-30 Hull FC: Andre Savelio (3), Ratu Naulago (2) & Jamie Shaul (1).