Kick Off: 2000, 03/03/2017
Stadium: Totally Wicked Stadium
TV: Sky Sports 3
St Helens have enjoyed some big home wins over Wakefield in recent years and are fancied at 91/100 to beat Trinity by more than 12 points in Friday night’s Super League XXII tussle at Totally Wicked Stadium.
In regular-season encounters at this venue, Saints have prevailed 44-4 in each of the past couple of campaigns and before that registered victories of 40-16, 52-18 and 38-12.
There was also a 32-12 triumph in the Super 8s last term, so Kieron Cunningham will be looking for his side to continue that trend with another emphatic victory.
Saints failed to recover from a slow start when beaten 24-16 at Leigh last weekend but they had impressed us when edging out Leeds 6-4 at home in week one, with the manner of victory rated more convincing than the scoreline suggests.
Theo Fages and James Roby will be able to exploit some holes in the Wakefield defence around the play-the-ball if St Helens’ powerful pack can get on the front foot and that should set up plenty of scoring chances.
Wakefield haven’t lost heavily in their opening two fixtures, going down 12-8 at home to Hull and then 24-16 at Huddersfield, but the first of those games was played in atrocious conditions and they were a touch flattered by the scoreline against the Giants, with Ben Jones-Bishop bagging a 90-metre interception try just as they looked set to concede themselves.
The visitors do have the ability to get across the whitewash when the opportunities come but obtaining enough good field position against a solid outfit like Saints may prove troublesome.
In Friday’s other match, Leigh should head to Wigan in fine spirits following that first victory back in Super League against Saints and the Centurions appeal at 91/100 with 16 points start here.
Neil Jukes’ side were run ragged in their opening match at Castleford but learned enough from that experience to then push Leeds all the way before registering a confidence-boosting maiden success.
Wigan only just scraped a late win at Widnes last weekend and may still need more time to fully recover from their World Club Challenge clash with Cronulla.