Challenge Cup trumps the Grand Final – Just, says Wigan ace

Wigan will be going all out to emulate their 2013 Challenge Cup heroics this season and one player in particular thinks lifting the Ladbrokes-sponsored cup is the ultimate achievement in Rugby League.

In an exclusive chat with Ladbrokes News ahead of the Warriors sixth-round clash with Hull KR second rower Rhodri Lloyd explained that the fact you can be dumped out of the tournament at any time makes it the most exciting experience in the sport.

Asked whether he’d rather win the Challenge Cup or Super League’s Grand Final, the 21-year-old said:  “I’d choose the Challenge Cup because its knockout rugby and I think the team that wins it shows a lot of determination.

“The fact its knockout rugby makes it that bit more exciting. The trip down to London is amazing too and makes it extra special.”

With all the top teams – excluding Catalans – based in the north of England there could be some animosity about having the final held in London but Lloyd feels the capital is a great place to hold such a grand occasion.

“Its brilliant having it in London because while I didn’t play in the 2013 final getting the train down and the whole is experience is special,” he added.

“A lot of northerners don’t get many chances to enjoy the city life in London so it’s a great venue for Rugby League.”

The former London Broncos man says being part of the squad that won the cup in 2013 is his favourite memory of the competition to date and after a relative disappointment of last year’s Warriors campaign Wigan will be doing their utmost to wrestle the crown away from Leeds this season.

Whether or not he’ll get to run out in front of a packed Wembley Stadium in a dream final against St Helens remains to be seen but at odds of 1/6 to beat Hull KR this weekend and 4/1 to win the cup outright it looks like Wigan could hold up their end of the bargain.

I’m Welsh so I’d have to say the Millennium Stadium but if not somewhere in Manchester –Old Trafford or even the Etihad but saying that St James’ Park is good too. But really wherever you have it the fans will travel and make it a special occasion.

Dream final – Wigan v Saints would definitely be my pick in front of a full house At Wembley.

I’d have to say winning it in 2013 and being part of that squad. That was amazing to share that experience with the likes of Sean O’Loughlin and Harrison Hansen.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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James Curtis

After studying for a degree in journalism and gaining his NCTJ, James contributed to a wide range of papers, online publications and broadcasters including the South London Press, Press Association and Sky Sports News before joining the Ladbrokes News team.