Man of bronze to be Man of Steel?
William Hill, official Super League bookmaker, give St Helens’ hooker Keiron Cunningham a 25/1 quote to win the 2009 Man of Steel award ahead of his side’s first game of the season on Friday.
Cunningham, one of the game’s modern greats, has played every season of Super League and is held in such high regard in St Helens that a statue is to be erected in his honour. And the soon-to-be Man of Bronze has every chance of also becoming a Man of Steel, the prestigious title given to rugby league’s player of the season.
Kieron has said this will be his final year in the Super League and a first Man of Steel award would be a fitting way for such a great player to sign off. Plenty of Saints fans have latched on to the generous looking 25/1.
St Helens – quoted at 12/1 to win all thirteen of their regular season home matches and 15/8 to win the Grand Final – kick-off the 2009 campaign with the unfamiliar tag of second favourites to lift the Super League title, behind reigning champions Leeds, who are 13/8 for a third consecutive Old Trafford triumph.
Saints are 4/11 with Hills to beat Warrington in their season opener, with the visitors – who last won at the ground some fifteen years ago – 2/1 to come out on top. The draw is available at 20/1.
On handicap Hills ask Saints to concede 8 points, with both teams priced at 10/11 and the handicap tie 14/1. Last season’s Super League leading tryscorer Ade Gardner is 8/1 second favourite with Hills to prove himself master poacher once again, with Kevin Penny and Chris Hicks – both priced at 20/1 – rated the Warrington players most likely to top the tryscoring charts.