SAINTS full back Jack Welsby, in his usual calm, confident style has been setting out what is expected as the Saints look to bounce back big time in the 2024 Betfred Super League.

Paul Wellens’ men face new boys London Broncos at home this Friday as they kick the season off, their first competitive match since that heart-breaking semi-final defeat in Perpignan last October.

The newly appointed joint vice-captain Jack and Co will be looking for a dominant start to the season, in what most pundits are predicting will be a walkover.

However, if I know Wello, there will be no complacency and no disrespecting the visitors…only a focus on delivering a performance fit for a team looking to win their fifth title in six seasons.

There’s absolutely no doubt the Broncos will come out of the blocks in their first Super League game in five years.

However, once that initial adrenaline has worn off, I can’t see London living with the size, speed and experience of the home side.

I’m going for a Saints win by 30 points or more which is 11/10 at Betfred. And how about that man Welsby crossing the whitewash first which you can get at 8/1 with our title sponsor.

He spoke to the media when it was announced that Betfred have him and Warrington’s George Williams as 10/1 joint favourites to pick up the Steve Prescott MBE Man of Steel Award come next October.

Jack played it down, commenting that his priority was to play well to help his teams success, and if individual awards follow, it’s a bonus.

All focus is claiming back the Betfred Super League trophy from arch rivals Wigan, who go into the coming season as 2/1 favourites.

Last Thursday I had the pleasure of co-hosting player and coach interviews for Betfred at the Men’s, Woman’s and Wheelchair Super League launch in Manchester. There was a real buzz around the place ahead of the season kick off.

Some of that was due to the latest broadcasting announcement that every game across all three competitions will be available to view live over numerous channels, helping gain yet more eyes on our great game.

Along with major broadcasting partner Sky Sports, and new online platform Super League +, there was some great news that the BBC will show 15 prime time live mens Super League games, as well as other competitions over their online service.

Terrestrial TV is huge for further promoting RL to new audiences, casual viewers and further spread the greatest game beyond the M62 corridor.

Let’s hope Castleford Vs Wigan provide a great spectacle in the opening BBC2 fixture on Saturday afternoon.

If the Tigers can upset the favourites in round one, that will certainly make a statement - a shock result reflected in the Betfred price of 4/1 for the home win.

There are also some other blockbuster ties in week one, as Sam Burgess’s Warrington travel to last years beaten finalists Catalans.

Leeds host the Salford Red Devils where Brodie Croft faces his old teammates after switching clubs only 12 months into a new eight year contract.

However, probably the biggest battle of the week is over in Hull. Fierce City rivals Hull FC host the Robins of Hull Kingston Rovers in the opening fixture on Sky this Thursday.

This is one of the stand out games of any Betfred Super League season but the unknown of the season opening Derby makes things even more appealing to watch.

Let battle commence….I’m sure the Betfred Super League 2024 won’t disappoint….especially if the Saints are again lifting silverware! 

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