YORK City Knights kicked off their competitive season with a convincing 30-6 win at Sheffield Eagles in the Betfred Challenge Cup. Here are five things we learned from the tie.

1. There is more to come from the Knights

The immediate post-match assessment from the Knights camp was of a performance that contained errors, missed chances and ill discipline.

In truth, York were not at their best and, by our count, made 11 errors in total, including a couple of inexcusable drops from Perry Whiteley and Ben Jones-Bishop.

That said, the Knights still managed to win away against a Championship top-six rival by 24 points, which is some going.

It is certainly not just a cliche to say there is plenty more to come from this side and this victory is not a bad base from which to build.

2. There is plenty of competition for places

Arguably the greatest testament to the strength of this current York City Knights squad is the number of quality players that did not make the starting 17.

The Knights possess great depth at both prop and centre where they had players, each of whom you could make very strong cases for, not picked. Middles Ronan Dixon and Sam Scott missed out, having made a combined 42 appearances for York in 2019.

Meanwhile, in the three-quarters, Liam Salter - a virtual ever-present since his move from Hull Kingston Rovers - watched from the sidelines along with new recruit Tyme Dow-Nikau, who displayed his size, strength, and try-scoring abilities in the friendly against Hull FC.

With the unavailable trio of Riley Dean, Tim Spears and Adam Cuthbertson all potentially returning from next week, coach James Ford has plenty of selection headaches to cope with.

3. Brendan O’Hagan catches the eye again

“He was rubbish was Brendan,” Ford commented jocosely on his new half-back in a bid to keep his secret weapon away from the headlines.

But O’Hagan continues to take the column inches after winning back-to-back man-of-the-match awards, this time from the match broadcaster The Sportsman.

He kicked through for Whiteley’s opener but his second assist was even better, a bullet cut-out pass that flew past two York players and the on-rushing Ryan Millar to send over Whiteley again.

4. Kriss Brining’s absence would be a blow

It was immediately clear that Brining was hurt when he pulled up with a hamstring issue early in the second half.

That it came soon after his brilliant try was an even crueller blow for both the hooker and York.

Whether Ford opts to bring in youngster Daniel Barcoe or ask Will Jubb to put in 80-minute stints remains to be seen.

5. It is great to have rugby league back

After over a year away, it is fantastic to have competitive rugby league action back with clubs from all three professional divisions back in action.

The Rugby Football League has worked brilliantly to stagger kick off times to ensure that games do not overlap, allowing hardcore rugby league fans to watch all of the action at a reasonable cost.

Super League could take a leaf out of the RFL’s book given that some top-flight games are being restricted to season ticket holders, which seems counterintuitive to the sport’s growth beyond the die-hard loyalists.