Four games in and there’s a distinctly familiar look about the Betfred Super League table.
Saints sit right at the top with a 100% record, alongside fellow 2020 Grand Finalists Wigan, who will host game of the week on Thursday against third placed Hull FC.
We face Betfred Super League new boys Leigh.
Saints, buoyant after a hard-fought 18-10 win over the Huddersfield Giants, travel down the road to the Leigh Sports Village where the bottom club will be looking for their first win… as far-fetched as that sounds!
I say that as I was co-commentating for Our League on the Centurions-Salford game last Friday, which I can honestly say was one of the worst Betfred Super League games I’ve ever watched.
That’s something I think Leigh boss John Duffy agrees with. He was furious after the game about the way his team performed and how they let their heads drop and ‘gave in’.
The body language of the Leigh players certainly stood out to me too, and the longer the game went on the worse it got. It could be a long old season.
Salford, equally as poor for many parts of the game, recorded their first win of the season, with the experienced Kevin Brown directing the show, scoring two and having a hand in others as the Red Devils ran out 34-8 victors.
However, I’m sure both teams will have been working hard on the training ground this week.
So, it doesn’t look like things will be getting any easier for Leigh this week, with a Saints win looks like an absolute shoo-in.
Saying that, as we know it doesn’t work like that in RL! Complacency is I’m sure something that has been spoken about at the TWS.
Saints themselves will be looking for improvements. They looked convincing for the win against Huddersfield getting off to a flying start with Theo Fages crossing the whitewash after only four minutes following great work by Jack Welsby.
The champions crossed again via Mark Percival to go in at half time 10-nil up. But the Giants seemed to have more joy in the second half as the gave the ball more air, causing numerous problems down Saints left side defence, scoring twice.
Boss Kristian Woolf certainly wasn’t overjoyed despite taking the two points. He thought we let in two ‘easy’ tries and allowed Huddersfield back in the game, and vowed that there is lots of improvement on attack.
I’m sure much focus this week will be about being clinical and professional in a game they should win convincingly. I think that will be the case, and will go for a Saints victory by more than 36 points (7/4 with title sponsors Betfred).
In the other big clash over at the DW Stadium, I think the Warriors will just have too much for Hull FC.
Wigan have not been overly convincing themselves yet in 2021, but I think the return of Bevan French last week gives them that extra spark in attack – I’ll go for a home win by more than 10 points which Betfred have at 5/4.