3 things that put the ‘magic’ into Magic Weekend


Newcastle played host to Magic Weekend this year and the thousands of people descending on St James’ Park were not left disappointed.

With all 12 teams playing across two days Magic Weekend is always one of the highlights of the rugby league calendar but this year was more special than most and here are three reasons why.

Fans – Thousands of them

Rugby league has its detractors – those who call it a minority sport and disregard as a pastime for the north – but this year saw a record number of people make the trip to St James’ Park with 67,788 fans in attendance.

Almost 30,000 stuck around on Sunday to take in three action-packed games and take Magic Weekend to new heights.

Jermaine McGillvary’s last-minute try

After leading 16-0 against Catalans, Huddersfield thought they were cruising to a Magic Weekend victory against the French outfit.

However, the Dragons fought back valiantly and seemed to have secured a rare away victory only for the Giants speed merchant to deliver an acrobatic diving finish that ultimately helped his side earn a share of the spoils.

Widnes doing their bit for charity

In order to raise money for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation and in an attempt to tap into the local support Widnes released a bespoke black and white striped jersey for the occasion.

While it may have been peculiar to see the Gallowgate End packed with smiling faces – given the Magpies woeful Premier League campaign – everyone got behind the cause and helped to raise over £20,000!

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

Fancy a flutter? Sign up today to claim up to £25 in free bets.



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.