Match Preview – Widnes Vikings

Opponents: Widnes Vikings

Date: 02.07.2017

Venue: DW Stadium

Tickets: https://www.eticketing.co.uk/wiganwarriors/default.aspx

A look at the Opposition

Every team that Wigan play at the moment, seem to becoming into a bit of form. This week we have the same again, in recent weeks Widnes have beaten Leeds, Catalans and Leigh – so Sunday looks like it will be a tough game for Wigan.

Widnes seem to have improved through their pack in the past few weeks, laying a platform for Rangi Chase to then spark a bit of magic seems to have been the plan. The workload of O’Carroll, Dudson and Houston has been really impressive.

Widnes will be without Rangi Chase this week, which I don’t think is a bad thing for them, at the moment for every piece of ingenuity there are two mistakes or moments of frustration. I would expect a better team performance in his absence and Joe Mellor has enough quality to cause Wigan problems.

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Team News

The Widnes Vikings 19 Man Squad:

3. Chris Bridge
10. Jack Buchanan
18. Greg Burke
13. Hep Cahill
32. Danny Craven
15. Gil Dudson
16. Alex Gerrard
7. Tom Gilmore
33. Aaron Heremaia
11. Chris Houston
28. Ryan Ince
17. Stefan Marsh
6. Joe Mellor
8. Eamon O’Carroll
25. Tom Olbison
4. Charly Runciman
2. Corey Thompson
9. Lloyd White
12. Matt Whitley

Wigan 19 Man Squad:

Copy of leeds 19 man

Tony Clubb returns to the Wigan squad after having a kidney removed, a remarkable recover and a timely boost to a Wigan pack that has struggled to dominate since the injury to Ben Flower. A forwards battle on Sunday will lay the platform for whichever teams backs can take advantage – the added boost of Clubb is great for Wigan.

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Thoughts on the Game

Another must win game for Wigan, one to secure a Top Eight place but also to close the gap on St Helens and any other teams above them who may drop points. As with last week, teams above Wigan will drop points this week and last week was perhaps a point gained in the sense that granting Huddersfield the two points would have been a disaster. Its yet again, time to galvanise the side and put a run of wins together, no league win in the last eight is unacceptable and the players know that more than anyone.

I am hoping/expecting Wigan to win, they can’t afford to lose, every game is now a play-off game in one sense or another so Wigan need to get that mentality right. On paper, Wigan are one of the best teams in the comp and this is the third game now with players like Bateman and Tomkins back in – surely its all got to click at some stage. Let’s hope its Sunday

Looking at the 19 man squad, my Wigan line-up for Friday would be:

  1. Tomkins
  2. Burgess
  3. Gildart
  4. Gelling
  5. Marshall
  6. Williams
  7. Leuluai
  8. Sutton
  9. McIlorum
  10. Nuuausala
  11. Farrell
  12. Bateman
  13. O’Loughlin

Sub. Powell

Sub. Isa

Sub. Clubb

Sub. Field

Last Time Out

Prediction

 

The Wigan Rugby Blog predicts:

Score: Wigan 24 – 6 Widnes

First Try Scorer: Joe Burgess

 

Don’t forget, you can vote for your Man of the Match after the game at http://www.wiganrugby.blog or on our social media platforms on Twitter and Facebook

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