Blogs & Opinion


Luke Dorn returns for the new season!

Features - Luke Dorn Posted 8th February 2013 view comments

The season didn't quite get off to the start we had hoped for at London Broncos.

We have high expectations for our individual performances this year and especially being the first game of the season and at home, we were very disappointed to lose to Widnes.

We were outplayed and didn't step up to the mark. We didn't get going until the second half and before then we had been tentative, which is unlike us.

Luke Dorn: on the run in the Broncos' opening fixture against Widnes Vikings

Luke Dorn: on the run in the Broncos' opening fixture against Widnes Vikings

Widnes, to be fair, played a good style of footy; they threw the ball around and asked plenty of questions. They've made some quality signings and still have some big names, Kevin Brown and Gareth Hock, to come back in as well.

Yet while it is not the start we wanted, it is only one game. It's something we have learned from already.

If you're not aiming to make the play-offs and win the competition, I don't really see the point in taking part.

Luke Dorn
Quotes of the week

We are looking for improvement from last year, which was obviously a disappointment. But 2012 has now gone and this is a year for optimism.

If you're not aiming to make the play-offs and win the competition, I don't really see the point in taking part.

We haven't set down any specific goals for the campaign, but everyone in their mind knows that coming eighth is a bare minimum requirement. If we don't achieve that, we will be seriously disappointed.

We are confident, though, that we can surpass that mark and put our stamp on the competition. It didn't get off to the start we wanted, but every good team has had to overcome a loss.

Surprises

Plenty has been said about some surprising results in round one of the competition. Perhaps, though, it's too early to say after just one week; players have come and gone from clubs, plus there are new coaches in place, so it's hard to know really what is an upset at the moment.

What we can perhaps surmise is that Super League is getting closer between the top and the bottom. With each year that passes it appears more teams are challenging, and that can only be a good thing overall.

I guess the fact that the Australian market has dried up has played a part in that. There aren't many coming over from the NRL now, and that will probably remain the case until the British pound improves against the Australian dollar.

Also, clubs Down Under now have larger salary caps than before, thanks in part to the competition being awash with money after a new TV deal.

To recruit big names in the past you normally had to look overseas, but that's not so much the case now. Obviously Hull getting Gareth Ellis - an Englishman returning home - was the marquee acquisition of the off-season, but there hasn't been a great deal of major signings.

Instead there's been a realisation by clubs that they now have to develop their young players, to grow from within for long-term success.

Everyone's academy systems are getting stronger and stronger, and with the way the RFL have set things up, with so many juniors having to be included in squads, there is a lot more time and funding being put into junior players. The competition, and the game itself, will eventually bear fruit from it.

You can follow Luke on Twitter @lukedorn

back to top

Other Rugby League Experts:

Latest Posts in Rugby League:

Phil Clarke

It's Grand Final time!

Phil Clarke looks at previous finals between rivals Wigan and St Helens, but who does he think will win?...

comments

Latest News RSS feeds

Full house for St Helens clash

St Helens have sold out their new home Langtree Park for the game against South Sydney Rabbitohs.

Mounis and Casty lead Dragons

Catalans Dragons have appointed Greg Mounis and Remi Casty as co-captains of the club.

Burgess shocked at NRL move

Sky Sports News HQ's Fraser Dainton meets Joe Burgess, who has sealed a move to Sydney Roosters from Wigan Warriors...

Mossop: I nearly joined Leeds

England prop Lee Mossop has revealed he considered joining Leeds before opting to rejoin Wigan.

Leeds to promote from within

Leeds Rhinos head coach Brian McDermott insists the young stars already in the fold will help the club impress.

Features

Rugby League Rocks!

Rugby League Rocks!

Get your tickets for Rugby League Rocks as we get set to usher in an exciting new era for the sport.

Top five rugby league moments of 2014

Top five rugby league moments of 2014

We look back on a memorable year of rugby league that includes one heck of a tackle, some trying-scoring acrobatics and THAT punch...

Our experts gives their view on what we can expect from Sam Burgess

Our experts gives their view on what we can expect from Sam Burgess

Sam Burgess has been named on Bath's replacements bench for Friday's clash with Harlequins at the Recreation Ground and much is expected of the former rugby league star known as 'Slammin Sam'.