|This is probably a good
time to be facing Bradford. They'll be on a high after their Cup
Final victory and that may work in our favour.
Just remember back to last
year after our cup win. We visited Wakefield just four days after
Murrayfield and it took a late late show for us to beat them. It was
Back in 2001 after Saints
had won the cup at Twickenham they travelled to Leeds and lost
In 2000 Bradford followed
up a Cup Final victory with an 8 all draw at Hull.
1999 Leeds won at Wembley
and then lost 62-18 at Knowsley Road against Saints.
Now I won't mention 1998
for obvious reasons but the same pattern follows. Recent history
shows that teams after winning the cup do not perform well in their
next match. Maybe, just maybe, we can catch Bradford on the hop and
One thing that isn't in
our favour is recent form against the Bulls. We haven't won any of
the last six meetings but Coach Stuart Raper said
"Everytime you play a side you can always bring up a record and
records are there to be broken. I think when we played Hull here
last season, they hadn't won here for a certain amount of years and
they did. Records don't bother me one bit, the game is about the
eighty minutes ahead of us and not is what behind us. I have the
utmost respect for Bradford, they are the Challenge Cup holders,
they beat us two weeks ago and they will be full of confidence but
it is a good time to play them, it can be very difficult to lift
yourself back up after such a high."
"We now have three
games in the space of eight days and there is six points to pick up
. We will be going all out to get all six to help put us back into a
healthy situation in the table, but we have the two top sides who
are going to be very tough. We did some things on Good Friday
against St.Helens which were very encouraging and we now have to
build on that and improve on that."
Our last win against the
Bulls came at the JJB on the last day of August in 2001. Brett
Dallas and Kris Radlinski scored the tries in a 16-10 victory that
included four drop goals shared between the two sides.
Dallas though will not be
on the field this Friday Night. He has tweaked his hamstring yet
again and will not return. Terry Newton has also picked up a knee
injury Hooker which will now require minor surgery.
“It’s so frustrating"
"After a good win (against Saints) it looked as though we would
get a few of our players back to ease the injury crisis. Now we are
back at square one. We will still be going into the game with the
same determination we showed against St.Helens and with that kind of
spirit anything is possible.”
Our crisis will be eased
slightly by new signing Nick Graham who will debut probably from the
bench following his signing from Cronulla late last week. Can't say
I know much about him personally but fans on a
Cronulla Message Board were very
complimentary about him.
They say that he is a
great tackler and has a decent short kicking game. The proof will be
in the pudding but a top tackler would be a great bonus for our
Kris Radlinski and Jamie
Ainscough also return to boost our back line.
Another piece of good news
for the Warriors is that Michael Withers will miss the game for the
opposition. He scored a hatrick in the 2001 Grand Final and twice
scored two tries in meetings against us last season. So his strike
power will be sorely missed by the Bulls outfit.
They will also be missing
prop Stuart Fielden who hasn't recovered from his knee injury.
At the end of the day
we've just got to give this match our best shot. We need to get the
monkey off our backs. We've not beaten them for a while but that run
has to end sometime. Let's hope it's this Friday Night. A win would
be a huge boost and would set us up nicely for the rest of the
Opposition Ones to
Lowes needs 6 points for a career
total of 400 for the Bulls.
He is a former man of steel and his form has been one of the
main reasons behind the Bulls success during the Super League
He was due to retire at the end of last season but Bulls
coach Brian Noble persuaded him to play on for one more year.
SQUAD NUMBER: 9