It’s all set up for thrilling play-off showdowns in the Women’s Super League as York Valkyrie move through as the first seed; St Helens will also play their semi-final at home after beating Warrington; Featherstone Rovers claimed an automatic place in top tier for next season
Last Updated: 10/09/23 8:32pm
York Valkyrie were presented with the League Leaders’ Shield as the Betfred Women’s Super League regular season came to a close on Sunday – and celebrated with a big win.
St Helens also secured home advantage in the first round of the play-offs while Featherstone Rovers claimed automatic promotion to the top tier when it is expanded to eight teams in 2024, thanks to a big helping hand from Barrow at Leigh.
Lindsay Anfield’s Valkyrie had already clinched top spot for the second consecutive season, and capped off an unbeaten 10-match campaign with a 60-4 romp against Huddersfield Giants with Carrie Roberts, the former St Helens, British Army and England centre who joined them midway through the campaign, scoring three of their tries.
York will now host Wigan Warriors in the first of the BWSL semi-finals on Saturday, September 23 – and if they win that game, they will also enjoy home advantage in the Grand Final on Sunday, October 8.
The second semi-final will be a repeat of the first Betfred Women’s Challenge Cup Final at Wembley between St Helens and Leeds Rhinos, and will kick off at 6pm at the Totally Wicked Stadium, also on September 23 – with both semis, and the Grand Final, live on Sky Sports.
The Rhinos had nudged above Saints into second place in the table by beating Wigan 24-0 at Headingley on Saturday, with former Saints centre Amy Hardcastle scoring two of their tries.
But Saints reclaimed second spot with a 56-6 win against Warrington Wolves, with a hat-trick from England forward Paige Travis.
The matches were much tighter in Group 2.
Leigh Leopards started the day in the box seat for the automatic promotion place, but it was never going to be easy against third-placed Barrow – and Amanda Wilkinson’s Raiders crashed the party at the Leigh Sports Village with a 14-12 win.
Kieron Purtill’s Leopards will have a second opportunity to secure promotion in the play-offs, where which they will face Salford Red Devils in the semis.
But it is Featherstone who can already start preparing to join the elite teams in 2024 after they beat Salford 28-18 at the Millennium Stadium.
Barrow will host Bradford Bulls in the semis.
Betfred Women’s Super League Play-Offs
York Valkyrie (1st) vs Wigan Warriors (4th) from the LNER Community Stadium, on Saturday September 23, live on Sky Sports with kick-off at 3.30pm
St Helens (2nd) vs Leeds Rhinos (3rd) from the Totally Wicked Stadium, later that evening with a 6pm kick-off, also live on Sky Sports.
Barrow Raiders vs Bradford Bulls and Leigh Leopards vs Salford Red Devils (on weekend of September 23-24 – exact dates and venues TBC).
Betfred Women’s Super League Grand Final:
Watch the showpiece live from 3pm and the Promotion Play-Off Final beforehand from 12pm, live on Sky Sports.
Watch the conclusion of the 2023 Women’s Super League season live on Sky Sports. Also stream on NOW.