With the Kingstone Press Championship season just around the corner, excitement is a very easy thing to find within all 12 clubs. At the Rugby League Championships launch day on Tuesday, we caught up with Oliver Wilkes, co-captain of Leigh Centurions.
The Centurions face fellow full-time team Bradford Bulls in the opening round of games, something Wilkes is really looking forward to.
“There’s a buzz about the place and everybody’s ready, everybody’s rested up ready for the weekend.” said Wilkes.
“There’s no tougher challenge this year than Bradford Bulls but we’re all confident.”
Despite the hype in the media leading up to the game, prop forward Wilkes was quick to dismiss that the whole season relied on what’s going to be an intense opening round matchup.
“The season is not won or lost in the first game by any stretch.” said the Cumbrian-born journeyman.
“It will lay down a marker but at the end of the day it doesn’t matter who any team is playing as they’re going to focus week to week.”
It’s not just the Bulls game that the Leigh co-captain is excited for, the whole structure and end-of-season promotion/relegation battle is also what Wilkes is enthusiastic about.
“There’s always been that saying ‘I wonder how they would go against the bottom end of Super League,” he said.
“Well we’re going to find out at the end of the year aren’t we?
“We’re going to find out who can compete and who can’t.
“It’s been a bit of a stalemate with no promotion/relegation for a few years but now it’s here and it’s exciting times for rugby league and it’s only going to bring the game forward.”