Two sides who lost last week open up the third round of action in the Super League on Thursday evening, when the Wigan Warriors take on the Toronto Wolfpack in a high profile clash at the DW Stadium.
It is fair to say that neither of these sides have made the start to their campaign that they would have wanted, so both will look to be extremely competitive and fired up to get two points which could launch their season.
It is hard to know what to make of the Wigan Warriors, although overall you would have to suggest they have been disappointing so far. Being slow out of the blocks isn’t necessarily a new thing for them, but you would have hoped that would have changed this season given the way last term ended. Bringing in the Man of Steel, Jackson Hastings, was seen as a huge coup but their form hasn’t really built on that.
The Warriors do have one win on their ledger, although whether they would have beaten the Warrington Wolves had their visitors not been reduced to 12 men is open to debate. There are many who believe they wouldn’t have and those calls were probably strengthened when they were beaten by the Castleford Tigers last week. That doesn’t make this a must-win game but they could do with a convincing performance, which they hope will get the desired result.
The first season in Super League actually started acceptably for the Toronto Wolfpack. They took the lead against the Castleford Tigers and looked bang up for it, but it didn’t take long for them to fall apart in that match and that carried over into their second game, which saw them go down to the Salford Red Devils, a game after which coach Brian McDermott opted out of the post-match press conference.
You get the feeling he did that to lead something of a siege mentality about his unit, something they might need if they are going to survive this term. They might have the incredibly talented Sonny Bill Williams in their ranks but they will need more than his presence if they are going to stay up this term. They will need the rest of their pack to come to the party. You get the feeling there are tries in this Wolfpack unit but that can be said of most in Super League.
Wigan Warriors are without three players as they look to bounce back from their loss last week. Jake Shorrocks, George Burgess and Sam Powell all have injuries and are missing this match. All eyes will be on Jackson Hastings to deliver the goods.
Toronto Wolfpack will be without their star attraction Sonny Bill Williams. He is back in New Zealand for the birth of his child so the Canadian outfit are going to need to stand up and be counted without the superstar.
I can’t say I’ve been massively impressed with the Wigan Warriors attack this season but they look like they have got an excellent chance to get going in that regard in this match against a Toronto Wolfpack outfit who have already surrendered 10 tries in their two matches this term. The one good thing about Wigan this season in the main has been their defence, which in the most part has been as tough as we expect it to be.
The same certainly can’t be said of the Wolfpack defence. We’ve seen in recent seasons that teams coming up can score tries but they have a real problem when it comes to stopping them at the other end and there are early signs of that trend continuing. There is no Sonny Bill Williams to come off the bench in this match either so I see the Toronto outfit struggling. Wigan should have more than 16pts in hand at the end of this one.
WON – Back Wigan Warriors (-16) to beat Toronto Wolfpack for a 4/10 stake at 1.91 with Betway