The annual league play off, which is being scrapped next season as the league structure reforms over winter, will decide which of the 4th and 5th finishers in the Super 8s will crash their way into the Super League next season.
But for the first time since the Million Pound game was formed in 2015 there is no long-standing Super League “favourites”.
Salford Red Devils, Leeds Rhinos and Hull KR have all safely negotiated their passage back into Super League, while Widnes Vikings have fallen fowl to the qualifiers, and will compete in the Championship next term.
So, what does this mean for the Super League? Having two complete newcomers competing for a Super League standing?
When you look at Toronto Wolfpack and London Broncos, it’s obvious they’re two clubs with a rich history and deep pool of determination and professionalism, despite them both spending the past few years in the Championship.
Toronto sent their application to join the UK’s third tier of professional rugby league back in 2014. They were rejected at first but then in 2016 they were granted permission to join the third tier. Canada has the largest amount of rugby league fans outside of Australia, France, New Zealand and the U.K so it was arguably a smart move by the RFL.
But despite them being the other side of the Atlantic Ocean they do have Super League connections.
Head Coach Paul Rowley, originally from Leigh, used to play hooker for Championship sides Leigh, Halifax and, at the time, Northern Ford Premiership side Huddersfield Giants, who finished 5th in the Super League this season.
🗣 “It’s a historic match for us as a club, being promoted from League 1 to Championship and now possibly going from Championship to Super League. No one has ever done that back to back, double promotion, in this competition, ever – in over 100 years.”
– David Argyle
— Toronto Wolfpack (@TOwolfpack) October 4, 2018
Toronto also has numerous players who used to mark their mark in the Super League. Gary Wheeler is a former St. Helens and Warrington Wolves centre. Preston born Ryan Brierley has played for Leigh Centurions who were part of the SL last year and Huddersfield Giants and 33-year-old Bob Beswick who made 22 appearances for Wigan Warriors.
— London Broncos (@LondonBroncosRL) October 4, 2018
But if it was a game of Top Trumps Broncos would have the card of “Former Super League Club.” From 1996 til 2014 when they were relegated after a thrashing form Warrington, 72 – 12.
The Broncos don’t have quite as many player connections to the Super League but this could arguably be because they’re a southern based team and the majority of Super League teams are northern.
Whichever team is crowned champion on Sunday it will mean there’s another exciting Super League season on the cards.
Having a fresh team join the long-standing likes of Wigan will no doubt create a dangerous underdog, which could be undoubtedly underestimated.
For teams in the likes of League 1, having the The Pack or London join the Super League, could almost be some inspiration for them that a bit of faith and determination can get you climbing the ladder.
So, it’s clear to see that Tornoto Wolfpack and London Broncos are more than capable of having a great season in the Super League. Now all that’s left to do is sit on the edge of your seat and see who wins the 80-minute battle on Sunday, 7pm.