Another week and another raft of moves in Super League.
The week started with a bang as Leeds Rhinos confirmed they had signed Hull & England winger, Tom Briscoe on a 5 year deal, beating NRL and other Super League teams to his signature. It means Briscoe will be reunited with younger brother Luke, who joined the Rhinos back in 2011. Leeds now boast a number of wingers, with Ryan Hall, Kallum Watkins and Ben Jones Bishop all able to play there, so it remains to be seen if any of these players might be leaving Leeds over the next couple of months.
Another Super League player linking up with a sibling this week was Johnny Walker. Walker is moving from Castleford to Hull KR, on a 3 year deal, where he will play alongside his twin brother, Adam, who has himself recently signed a new deal at the Craven Park club, keeping him there through to the 2017 season.
Whilst this time of year is normally known for the migration of wildlife south for the Winter, London Broncos players are bucking this trend and heading northwards. As the exodus from the Stoop continues, Chris Bailey and Antonio Kaufusi this week swapped West London for West Yorkshire as they moved to Huddersfield Giants. Kaufusi is known for his big hits and impact play and brings a wealth of Rugby League experience with him to the 2013 Super League Leaders.
In the North West this week, Salford started to clear some spaces in the dressing room to make space for all the new signings they have announced already. The first two to leave were Wayne Godwin and Ryan McGoldrick. Godwin, who joined Salford in 2011 brings to an end a 13 year Super League career by signing for Dewsbury Rams for the 2014 Kingstone Press Championship Season. McGoldrick has been released half way through his 2yr deal at Salford, with the news being announced by the Salford Red Devils owner, Dr Marwan Koukash, on his personal twitter feed.
The week, and indeed the 2013 season finished with an almighty crescendo at Old Trafford yesterday evening with Wigan overcoming Warrington to be crowned 2013 Super League Champions. It was an emotional night for a few at the “Theatre of Dreams” as there were at least 7 players making their final appearances for their current clubs. Wigan were saying a farewell to Sam Tomkins, Pat Richards and Lee Mossop, with Warrington players Adrian Morley, Brett Hodgson, Mike Cooper and Garreth Carvell all bowing out.
As the season finishes and the aches, pains and injuries of another tough season begin to heal, thoughts will no doubt start to turn towards the Rugby League World Cup now. The opening ceremony in Cardiff is now only 20 days away. Over the course of the 5 week tournament surely there will be a few players from the 14 competing nations hoping the Tournament puts them in the shop window.