BBC BLOGS - George Riley

Archives for May 2010

Super League XV mid-season report

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George Riley George Riley | 11:17 UK time, Friday, 28 May 2010

So a first blog for two weeks after allowing myself the rare luxury of a mid-season holiday, only to be labelled a "swanky Londoner" on my return to England by Jon Wilkin, who joined our commentary team at the weekend as I battled to hold together a six-and-a-half-hour 5 live Sport extravaganza from Wentworth.

Now seems to be the ideal opportunity to conduct a mid-season report on Super League XV.

I think we are perfectly poised 15 games in. The two best teams of the season to date occupy the top two places, with Wigan marching powerfully ahead of Warrington towards the League leaders' Shield.

The two sides who have dominated Super League over the past few seasons are lurking ominously in the chasing pack - Leeds, having overcome their dreadful start, have real momentum in fifth while St Helens lie third.

Wilkin reckons the big boys will come good. "All the things that the Rugby Football League have implemented like the salary cap and the changes in the structure of the game have produced a brilliantly tight and refreshing Super League and a much more even playing field," he told me.

"But I'm sure by the end of the season there will be changes to the top and I expect Leeds and my boys Saints to be up there challenging again."

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Potter's departure fails to shock

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George Riley George Riley | 13:23 UK time, Thursday, 6 May 2010

I scarcely raised an eyebrow when it emerged that coach Mick Potter will be leaving St Helens when his contract expires at the end of the season. But it is the lack of surprise within the game as a whole to the imminent end to a short-lived managerial career that is probably more telling.

The 46-year-old Australian had just been named coach of the year in 2008 for his exploits with Catalans Dragons when he took over at Knowsley Road and presided over the club's first trophyless season since 2003 in 2009. He has now decided to call it a day and head back down under, leaving Saints needing to find another new coach.

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