Challenge Cup 2013: Predicting Tournament Winner

Ben SnowballContributor IJuly 16, 2013

WARRINGTON, ENGLAND - JUNE 24:  Richie Myler of Warrington looks to pass in the tackle of Wigan's Lee Mossop during the Super League match between Warrington Wolves and Wigan Warriors at the Halliwell Jones Stadium on June 24, 2013 in Warrington, England. (Photo by Paul Thomas/Getty Images)
Paul Thomas/Getty Images

Challenge Cup glory beckons again for the Warrington Wolves after their emphatic 44-24 victory over the Huddersfield Giants secured them a semifinal showdown with Hull FC.

Warrington ran in eight tries in total and are ready to be engraved on the trophy they won at Wembley less than 12 months ago.

Scores of 74, 52 and now 44 in this year’s tournament have left their opponents helpless and if they continue in the same vein there’s no reason they can’t win the double.

Warrington’s winning run stretches back seven games to the middle of May, but they will be acutely aware of the fact that the last side to beat them was Hull in a 26-16 defeat.

Their season was plagued with inconsistency to begin with, but they’ve built momentum at the right time and now find themselves two points off the Super League summit and one game away from another Challenge Cup final.

At this rate, no one will be able to stop them as their winning run has seen them topple Wigan, Huddersfield and the Leeds Rhinos.

Joel Monaghan continued his impressive season with two more tries in the win over Huddersfield and Brett Hodgson kicked solidly enough to keep their hopes alive.

With a favourable Super League run in, their final six games sees them avoiding the top four. This means they can focus on the Challenge Cup.

But before they get too carried away they must face a Hull side who battled superbly to win against Catalan Dragons in France 24-13 and reach their first semifinal in five years.

Pencil Saturday 27 July into your diary for that clash as the two do battle for a spot in Wembley’s showpiece final.

Warrington have the chance to lay down a marker to the rest of rugby league and become the first side since St Helens in 2006 to do the Super League and Challenge Cup double.

It’s no easy feat—just ask Leeds Rhinos who have lost two consecutive finals as league champions—but the signs are promising even if there is a long way left to go.

If they continue their great run and get a bit of luck, 2013 will be the year the Warrington Wolves make history.