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2003 Match Preview: Bradford (A)
Wigan v Bradford Match Preview Posted on Friday, June 20 2003 @ 13:17:17 BST by Bilko
Wigan go to Odsal looking to beat Bradford for the first time since August 2001.


 
Bradford Bulls v Wigan Warriors Tetley's Super League Round 15
Saturday 21st June 2003. Kick Off 6:05pm at Odsal Stadium
Match Introduction
Wigan make a welcome return to Odsal Stadium tomorrow as they travel to Bradford for a clash with the Bulls!

It's fair to say we are all glad to see the back of the much hated Valley Parade and it's hitleresque stewards. Of course it didn't help that we didn't win any of our four trips to that ground but good riddance to the place!

The return to Odsal brings back memories of our last trip there in 2000. Bradford had an 31 match unbeaten home record until Frank Endacott's Wigan side strolled into town and took the spoils with the help of a comical drop goal from Neil Cowie! It's just one of so many memories that puts a smile of your face!

Three years on and Wigan will be looking for a similar victory which will help cement our place in the play offs.

It's always going to be tough against the Bulls but coach Stuart Raper says we have nothing to fear.

Raper said: "Bradford are a very good side, they are very well drilled, they do know how to win a game but we are going to go there with no fear. "

"I think sometimes they can intimidate a side before you even turn up for the game. We will give them plenty of respect but we are quietly confident we can go out there and do a job. We want to get some of these games they have got us on the bell and we want to start getting a few back and that starts this weekend for us.”

Wigan haven't beaten Bradford since August 2001 so we are due a win but we are going to have to produce a complete eighty minute performance like last week against Hull to have any chance.

We need to produce the spirit of the last hour against St Helens a fortnight a go but if we go 20-0 down to these boys there will be no coming back!

The Warriors are boosted by the returning Brian Carney and Danny Sculthorpe but Paul Johnson misses out.

Carney's return means Kevin Brown drops to the bench. I don't think that's a bad move for this game. With an inexperienced centre pairing in Sean O'Loughlin and Martin Aspinwall we need Carney in there but Brown can make an impact off the bench if required.

Sculthorpe has been quite remarkable this season, as have all our experienced props to be fair. The trio of O'Connor, Scully and Craig Smith have stepped up a gear or two and really led by example. Let's hope the three of them take the Bull by the horns in this match! If they do we'll have a good chance of victory!

Bradford welcome back veteran dummy spitter, sorry, hooker James Lowes back after he was rested against Warrington last week. Lesley Vianikolo also returns but there's good news, Michael Withers misses out. He always seems to scores against us so is absence is a blessing. Stuart Fielden is also an absentee.

Finally pre match entertainment at Odsal on Saturday is based on the movie musical "Grease". It's not my cup of tea personally, I prefer the pub, but why can't Wigan make the effort to entertain fans pre match like Bradford do?

There is also a Junior Academy match between the sides as a curtain raiser. The Under 18s game kicks off at 3:40pm.

Opposition One to Watch

Lesley Vianikolo

Lesley is Bradford's joint top try scorer this season with 13 tries.

He needs a try for a total of 100 points in his Bradford career.

The 6ft 2, 17 stone winger has scored 24 tries in 38 appearances for the Bulls since joining them from Canberra at the beginning of 2002.

SQUAD NUMBER: 5

 

Team News
Wigan Bradford
Brian Carney returns after a hamstring injury so Martin Aspinwall switches to centre, with Kevin Brown dropping to the bench. Prop Danny Sculthorpe takes over on the bench from Ricky Bibey after recovering form a shoulder problem. Centre Paul Johnson is still out with a hamstring injury. The Bulls recall hooker James Lowes, who was rested against Warrington last Sunday, and also welcome back winger Lesley Vainikolo, who missed the win at Wilderspool with a knee injury. Michael Withers and Stuart Fielden are their only absentees.
 
Team Sheets
Wigan Team
Shaun Briscoe, Brian Carney, Sean O'Loughlin, Martin Aspinwall, David Hodgson, Nick Graham, Adrian Lam, Craig Smith, Terry Newton, Terry O'Connor, Mick Cassidy, Gareth Hock, Andy Farrell
Subs: Danny Tickle, Luke Robinson, Danny Sculthorpe, Kevin Brown
Bradford Team
Probable: Robbie Paul, Tevita Viakona, Scott Naylor, Shontayne Hape, Lesley Vianikolo, Leon Pryce, Paul Deacon, Joe Vagana, James Lowes, Rob Parker, Daniel Gartner, Jamie Peacock, Mike Forshaw.
Subs (from): Paul Anderson, Lee Gilmour, Richard Moore, Karl Pratt, Lee Radford.
Match Referee
Karl Kirkpatrick (Warrington)
Pre Match Quotes
Wigan Bradford
"Bradford are a very good side, they are very well drilled, they do know how to win a game but we are going to go there with no fear."
Coach Stuart Raper
"I am looking forward to it immensely. My players are talking about putting a few wrongs right again and we are focusing on our performance."
Bulls Coach Brian Noble
Current League Positions
  Team P W D L F A Diff Pts Form
2 Bradford Bulls 13 11 0 2 418 226 +192 22 W2
3 Wigan Warriors 14 8 1 5 354 312 +42 17 W2
Opposition Form (Last 6) - Bradford Bulls
Date Opposition Competition Result

Score

Match Report
15/06/03 Warrington (A) SL8 Round 14 Won 24-20 Click Here
08/06/03 Hull (A) SL8 Round 13 Won 26-20 Click Here
01/06/03 London (H) SL8 Round 12 Lost 12-22 Click Here
23/05/03 Leeds (H) SL8 Round 11 Won 48-12 Click Here
18/05/03 Huddersfield (A) SL8 Round 10 Won 52-6 Click Here
11/05/03 Castleford (H) SL8 Round 9 Won 30-10 Click Here

Wigan Form (Last 6 all comps most recent game first): WWLWWW

Super League 8 Stats
Top Try Scorers
Wigan:
David Hodgson 8
Bradford: Robbie Paul & Leon Pryce 9

Top Goal Kickers
Wigan:
Andy Farrell 31
Bradford: Paul Deacon 61

Top Points Scorers
Wigan:
Andy Farrell 75
Bradford: Paul Deacon 134
Previous Super League Meetings in Bradford
Date

Result

Match Report

Att

12th July 1996 Bradford 20 Wigan 12 No Report

---

25th Aug 1997 Bradford 18 Wigan 33 Click Here

16761

12th June 1998 Bradford 12 Wigan 28 Click Here

14103

22nd May 1999 Bradford 19 Wigan 2 Click Here

13476

30th June 2000 Bradford 18 Wigan 30 Click Here

18815

16th Apr 2001 Bradford 35 Wigan 24 Click Here

16247

30th Sept 2001

Play Off Match
Bradford 24 Wigan 18

Click Here

13216

24th May 2002

Bradford 26 Wigan 28

Click Here

13314

14th Sept 2002

Bradford 34 Wigan 14

Click Here

12576

SL Record in games at Bradford: Wigan 3 Bradford 6
SL Record at Odsal Stadium: Wigan 3 Bradford 2
Overall Super League Record: Wigan 10 Bradford 10 (1 draw) (Includes play offs)

Matchday Weather

From bbci.

light rain Light Rain
Wind: 6mph from the South West.
Temps: Max: 18°C Low: 11°C

Ticket & Ground Details
Ground Admission: Adults: £12 Concessions: £6.00
Main Stand: Adults: £14/£15 Concessions: £7/£8
Click for Odsal Stadium Ground Guide.
Media Coverage
TV: The Match is Live in full on Sky Sports 3 from 6pm with commentary from Eddie Hemmings, Mike Stephenson and Phil Clarke..
Radio: Local: 95.1 BBC GMR will have full match commentary from 6pm on Saturday. 102.4 Wish FM will carry reports.
At the ground: Both BBC Radio Leeds (92.4fm) and local Bradford community station BCB 96.7fm will carry full match commentary.
Net: Online commentary will be available from BBC 5 Live Sports Extra @ http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/aod/fivesportsextra.shtml from 5:45pm on Saturday. Alternatively BCB 96.7 will broadcast the game online but with a Bradford bias. There coverage starts at 5:30pm @ http://www.bcb.yorks.com.
Opposition Views
Other Links
Official Website
Bulls Forum
Prediction
Bradford 18 Wigan 18
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