Here at Lovell Rugby we embrace all forms of the game and having spent the summer following the British & Irish Lions and Rugby Sevens World Cup, we are now turning our attention to the Challenge Cup this weekend – rugby league’s most prestigious cup competition.
Having first been contested for in 1896, almost one hundred teams from across Europe entered this years competition which will culminate in a showdown between Hull FC and the Wigan Warriors at Wembley on Saturday.
Going on league form then Wigan come into the final as favourites to lift the silverware and also hold the record for Challenge Cup wins, with a total of 18 and their most recent coming in 2011. In contrast, Hull have been defeated in the final on 11 occasions and only triumphed three times, with their last success in 2005. Everyone knows that trophies aren’t won on records though and come 3pm Saturday it will be all or nothing.
Not that Hull will be short of confidence going into the final as they defeated reigning Cup holders, the Warrington Wolves, in the semi-finals as well as Catalan Dragons on their journey. Wigan made light work of their last four opposition by demolishing the London Broncos 70-0 and have averaged over 50 points through the rounds.
The last time these two sides met in the final was back in 1985 and produced a classic match which will be a hard act to follow. Wigan triumphed on that occasion 28-24 and for many fans of both sides, this is a game that will live long in the memory.
For all our rugby league fans, keep with Lovell Rugby as over the next two months we will be building up to the Rugby League World Cup as the competition arrives in England and Wales.