Another round of Super League fixtures gets underway with a clash between two sides expected to struggle before the season began but who have actually started to surprise those with that viewpoint by their starts to the campaign when the Wakefield Trinity Wildcats host the Leigh Centurions.
I would imagine the aim for both when the season commenced was to make the top eight and secure their Super League status for another year and equally I would think in that quest both will have highlighted this as a must win match which should ensure some competitive action.
Wakefield Trinity Wildcats
The Wildcats went to Leeds last week off the back of two successive wins and with a good recent record over the Rhinos they had reason to be confident but they put in a pretty woeful performance which might just have shattered any confidence they had built up. They will need to show that was a one-off here.
It was defensively where Wakefield were exposed last week and that is something they will know they can’t afford at this level but some slack can be given by the fact that Headingley can be a tough place to go when Leeds are on it like they were in that match. They will need to defend better here though.
The promoted side head to Belle Vue off the back of two wins on the trot and they have restricted those two opponents to just eight points in total. I would imagine it is that statistic which will have pleased their coach the most at the end of the day because I think it is fairly certain that by the style of rugby Leigh play they will score points.
Another area where the Leigh hierarchy will be pleased is the work rate and the class of their forwards with Gareth Hock standing out with a couple of tries last week. If they can ride the back of excellent field position then it is going to take a decent side to beat the Centurions this season either at home or away.
Wakefield will be delighted to be able to call upon Danny Kirmond this week after he avoided a suspension for a high tackle in the defeat at Leeds last week. Mason Caton-Brown and Michael Sio miss out.
Leigh haven’t been so lucky with the suspensions as they have lost Glenn Stewart for a couple of games. He had only just returned from injury though. Martyn Ridyard also leaves the squad with Curtis Naughton coming in.
All three of Leigh Centurions’ wins this season have come at home but I don’t think that means they can’t play away. Only Castleford have put more than 20pts on Leigh this season and they are scoring for fun against most teams right now so that isn’t by any means a disgrace.
Defence is an issue for Wakefield and I’m becoming increasingly concerned that if the ball doesn’t make it to Tom Johnstone’s hands their attacking play is limited. I don’t see these problems with Leigh. I think they have good balance to their attack and given that they know how important this match is I fancy they might just edge it.
Back Leigh Centurions to beat Wakefield Trinity Wildcats for a 4/10 stake at 2.25 with Coral