1953–54 Northern Rugby Football League season

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1953–54 Northern Rugby Football League season
League Northern Rugby Football League
Champions Wolvescolours.svg Warrington
League Leaders Faxcolours.svg Halifax
Top point-scorer(s) Saintscolours.svg Peter Metcalfe 369
Top try-scorer(s) Wolvescolours.svg Brian Bevan 67
Seasons

The 1953–54 Rugby Football League season was the 59th season of rugby league football played in England. The championship, which involved thirty teams, started in August, 1953 and culminated in a finals play-off series in April, 1954 which resulted in a championship final between Warrington and Halifax. The season was also punctuated by the 1954 Rugby League World Cup, the first ever, and is also notable for its Challenge Cup final, which was drawn and had to be re-played, attracting a world record crowd for a rugby football match of either code.[1]

Season summary[edit]

The 1953-54 season saw Brian Bevan become the highest try scorer in rugby league history when he passed the 446 tries mark set by Alf Ellaby.

Warrington won the Lancashire League, and Halifax won the Yorkshire League. St.Helens beat Wigan 16–8 to win the Lancashire County Cup, and Bradford Northern beat Hull F.C. 7–2 to win the Yorkshire County Cup.

Championship[edit]

Ladder[edit]

Club P W D L PF PA D Pts
1 Halifax 36 30 2 4 538 219 +319 62
2 Warrington 36 30 1 5 663 311 352 61
3 St. Helens 36 28 2 6 672 297 +375 58
4 Workington Town 36 29 0 7 604 333 +271 58
5 Hull 36 25 0 11 685 349 +336 50
6 Huddersfield 36 24 0 12 689 417 +272 48
7 Wigan 36 23 1 12 688 392 +296 47
8 Barrow 36 23 0 13 574 377 +197 46
9 Bradford Northern 36 22 0 14 628 414 +214 44
10 Leeds 36 22 0 14 766 517 +249 44
11 Wakefield Trinity 36 19 1 16 671 508 +163 39
12 Oldham 36 17 4 15 504 366 +138 38
13 Leigh 36 19 0 17 547 459 +88 38
14 Featherstone Rovers 36 18 2 16 478 431 +47 38
15 Hunslet 36 19 0 17 455 451 +4 38
16 Widnes 36 16 3 17 420 431 -11 35
17 York 36 17 0 19 412 401 +11 34
18 Keighley 36 15 3 18 473 533 -60 33
19 Rochdale Hornets 36 14 3 19 404 457 -53 31
20 Dewsbury 36 14 3 19 432 508 -76 31
21 Whitehaven 36 14 1 21 362 544 -182 29
22 Salford 36 13 2 21 370 438 -68 28
23 Swinton 36 13 1 22 341 513 -172 27
24 Batley 36 13 1 22 367 658 -291 27
25 Bramley 36 11 3 22 437 746 -309 25
26 Castleford 36 11 1 24 437 728 -291 23
27 Belle Vue Rangers 36 7 2 27 307 714 -407 16
28 Doncaster 36 5 2 29 340 840 -500 12
29 Hull Kingston Rovers 36 5 2 29 298 737 -439 12
30 Liverpool City 36 4 0 32 304 777 -473 8

Play-offs[edit]

Semi-finals[edit]

  • Halifax 18, Workington Town 7.
  • Warrington 11, St Helens 0.

Final[edit]

The Championship Final was played between Warrington and Halifax on 8 May (three days after the epic Challenge Cup re-play) at Maine Road before a crowd of 36,519. The match was televised by the BBC and it was a tremendous defensive effort that helped Warrington to a narrow 8-7 win, with Bath kicking 4 goals.

Challenge Cup[edit]

The 1954 Challenge Cup was the 53rd staging of rugby league's oldest knockout competition, the Challenge Cup. It featured clubs from the 1953–54 Northern Rugby Football League season and is notable for its Final which had to be replayed before possibly the largest crowd in rugby league history.

Sources[edit]

  1. ^ Baker, Andrew (1995-08-20). "100 years of rugby league: From the great divide to the Super era". Independent, The. independent.co.uk. Retrieved 2009-09-25.