|Although London may not have won at Griffin Park since September
last year this trip is still going to be difficult for the Warriors.
Over the years there have been some pretty close battles between the
sides down in the capital which have contributed to job losses, although
I don't think either coach is in danger this time round.
Wigan aren't doing too bad at all. After our worst ever start to a
Super League season we've recovered to only be one point worse off that
the corresponding stage of the season last year. We are in as good a
position in what is meant to have been a consolidation season for us.
Despite shocking home form London are right in the play off mix. They
are level with Warrington and Castleford on 17 points in the table but
are 8th due to an inferior points difference. However the Broncos have
two matches in hand coming up this month which if they win will move
them up to 5th.
London did manage to win one "home" match this year but that was
played "on the road" in Aberavon. Last time out at home they nearly
managed a win but they were denied by a late Hull try which nicked them
So they've taken just three of a possible twelve points in home
matches compared to fourteen out of a possible twenty away from home.
Earlier in the season London came to the JJB and shocked us with a
34-30 win. If you remember we'd led 16-0 after just 14 minutes and they
came back for a deserved win.
Stuart Raper is vowing revenge for that defeat.
He said: "The players were pretty hurt and disappointed (with that
result). It's one we definitely want to get back."
Let's hope they show that attitude on the pitch come Friday Night.
Whilst we have a fairly comfortable victory over Wakefield in the
last round, London were hammered 50-8 at Warrington.
Broncos coach Tony Rea is drawing similarities with a similar loss
suffered earlier in the season.
They lost 62-16 at St Helens but bounced back with a five match
winning run and Rea is hoping for the same to happen again.
Rea said: "We were given quite a wake-up call at St
Helens and we turned it into a positive with a string of improved
"I guess that tells you that we're a team that
doesn't stay down for long.
"We've addressed a number of issues this week at
training and we know what we need to do. It's now a case taking that
into the game."
The Warriors camp suffered a blow this week when Brett Dallas
returned home due to his mother falling seriously ill.
Obviously you can understand the circumstances but it's a big loss to
lose Dallas who'd score five tries in his last two matches.
Paul Johnson is also out following concussion suffered in the early
moments of the Wakefield game.
Dave Hodgson replaces Dallas on the wing with Sean O'Loughlin moving
from the bench to replace Hodgy in the centres. Danny Tickle returns to
the team in place of Johnson after a spell in the Under 21s.
Craig Smith also makes a welcome return following a one match
suspension. I think we are pretty lucky that he only got a one match ban
for that high tackle at Huddersfield. Still we won't complain especially
with Danny Sculthorpe currently unavailable.
Wigan just need to go to London and perform. This is one of those
nights were a top quality performance isn't necessarily needed. We just
need a good professional job that will give us the two points. If we get
a good performance as well it'll be a nice bonus!
Finally how nice of Sky to move this match to Friday denying many
fans a chance to get down south. I know it's difficult, I'm lucky to be
going myself. If you are going, see you down there either at the ground
or in one of the nearby pubs (it has a pub on every corner of the ground
- pure genius!) .
Opposition One to Watch
North East born 22 year old
stand off Chris Thorman is having a very impressive year with the
He established himself
with the Huddersfield Giants and was part of the side that won last
years NFP Grand Final before moving south for this season.
He recently putting in a
superb performance for Yorkshire in the Origin Match scoring twenty
points equaling the record for points in a roses match.
His goal for the rest of
the season is to try and earn Great Britain honours.