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2003 Match Preview: Bradford (H)
Wigan v Bradford Match Preview Posted on Sunday, August 24 2003 @ 08:23:20 BST by Bilko
Wigan are hoping to stop the Bulls virtually sealing the Minor Premiership when they visit the JJB on Monday Night.

 
Wigan Warriors v Bradford Bulls Tetley's Super League Round 24
Bank Holiday Monday 25th August. 5:30pm at JJB Stadium.
Match Preview
Wigan will be somehow looking to stop the Bradford Bulls juggernaut when they visit the JJB for the second time this season on Bank Holiday Monday.

The Bulls are in red hot form, having won eight in a row since losing 35-0 at home to St Helens in June.

Victory for them will all but secure the minor premiership following Leeds' defeat to Castleford on Friday.

That defeat may give the Warriors a chance to nick second spot but they can't afford defeat here.

For me this is an ideal opportunity for us to lay down our marker ahead of the play offs with a good victory.

We've beaten them before this season, and very comfortably at that, so we know what to do.

Looking back to that 35-22 win at Odsal in June the key was a good start. Two tries in the first eleven minutes laid the foundations for the win. 

It will be important to get a similar start this time round if we are to halt the Bulls charge.

Wigan are expected to welcome back both Kris Radlinski and Adrian Lam for this clash.

Personally, and I never thought I'd ever say this but, I wouldn't bring Radlinski straight back into the starting line up. Briscoe has been doing an excellent job and I'd leave him in there with Rads on the bench. 

To bring the ginger wonder straight back in after a three and a half month lay off would be a bit of a gamble. His last game incidentally was back on May 10th, a 22-18 victory away at Widnes.

Lam's return brings obvious benefit's. His three drop goals were crucial in the last encounter between the sides and we'll need a similar performance from him to ensure success.

Like Lam, Andy Farrell is rated 50-50 but both should play.

The major worries for Bradford are Leon Pryce and Paul Deacon who both missed their game with Hull last week. 

It would be a bonus for us if Deacon is missing because at one stage last week they had James Lowes kicking goals and he was woeful.

For me the key to victory is luck, and lots of it. But with Steve Ganson as referee I can't see us getting much of it.

Lets hope we get a bumper crowd. Enjoy the game.

Opposition One to Watch

Lesley Vianikolo

Despite being dodgy in defence under the high ball his try scoring record speaks for itself.

This season he has scored 19 tries in 22 Super League appearances. 

He was on the score sheet when Bradford won 14-8 at the JJB in May.

SQUAD NUMBER: 5
Team News
Wigan   Bradford
Wigan expect to have full-back Kris Radlinski back after three-month lay-off with a wrist injury but the chances of skipper Andy Farrell (dead leg) and scrum-half Adrian Lam (ankle) playing are rated 50-50.   Bradford coach Brian Noble is waiting on the fitness of half-back pair Leon Pryce and Paul Deacon, who both missed last week's win over Hull, and second rower Daniel Gartner and winger Lesley Vainikolo.
Match Referee
Steve Ganson (St Helens)
Pre Match Quotes
Wigan   Bradford
"Last year we came unstuck in the play-offs when we had to travel to St Helens.We did have a stack of injuries, but not having home advantage cost us too, so to play as many of these games as possible at the JJB Stadium this year has to be one of our prime aims. This means we have to try and win the rest of our league games, starting with the Bulls on Monday." Sean O'Loughlin  
"Wigan will be looking to push up the table this week and will see this as an opportunity to get the points. They will want to carry on where they left off against Leeds. We watched the tape of that game and they are very enthusiastic. They have a new Coach in Mike Gregory and you can already see they are doing things a little differently to how they have been playing and that’s Mike’s influence on them." Bradford coach Brian Noble
Current League Positions
  Team P W D L F A Diff Pts Form
1 Bradford Bulls 23 19 0 4 754 424 +330 38 W8
3 Wigan Warriors 23 14 2 7 603 462 +141 30 U3
Opposition Form (Last 6) - Bradford
Date Opposition Competition Result

Score

Match Report
16/08/03 Hull (H) SL8 Round 23 Won 36-22 Click Here
08/08/03 Leeds (A) SL8 Round 22 Won 18-16 Click Here
03/08/03 Huddersfield (H) SL8 Round 21 Won 30-16 Click Here
30/07/03 London (A) SL8 Round 20 Won 60-6 Click Here
27/07/03 Castleford (A) SL8 Round 19 Won 40-20 Click Here
20/07/03 Widnes (H) SL8 Round 18 Won 40-8 Click Here

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

Super League 8 Stats
Top Try Scorers
Wigan:
David Hodgson 12
Bradford: Lesley Vianikolo 19

Top Goal Kickers
Wigan:
Andy Farrell 74
Bradford: Paul Deacon 103

Top Points Scorers
Wigan:
Andy Farrell 173
Bradford: Paul Deacon 238
Previous Super League Meetings at JJB Stadium
Date Result Match Report

Att

19th April 1996 Wigan 22 Bradford 6 No Report  
11th Apr 1997 Wigan 18 Bradford 22 Click Here 10170
20th Sept 1998 Wigan 38 Bradford 4 Click Here 11181
13th Aug 1999 Wigan 14 Bradford 0 Click Here 10734
7th June 2000 Wigan 12 Bradford 12 Click Here 17365
27th Aug 2000 Wigan 20 Bradford 19 Click Here 17737
7th Oct 2000 Play Off Match
Wigan 40 Bradford 12
Click Here 14620
29th June 2001 Wigan 44 Bradford 30 Click Here 14886
31st Aug 2001 Wigan 16 Bradford 10 Click Here 15052
1st Mar 2002 Wigan 4 Bradford 18 Click Here 14170
2nd May 2003 Wigan 8 Bradford 14 Click Here 10281

SL Record at Central Park/JJB: Wigan 7 Bradford 3 (1 draw)
Overall Super League Record: Wigan 11 Bradford 10 (1 draw) (Includes play offs)

Matchday Weather

From bbci.

cloudy Cloudy/Overcast
Wind: 7mph from the East.
Temps: Max: 21°C Low: 12°C

Ticket & Ground Details
North Stand (Visitors): Adults: £12.00 Under 18 yrs: £8.00 Senior Citizens: £8.00
West Stand: Adults: £16.00 No Concessions.
East Stand: Adults: £14.00 Concessions/Juniors/OAP's: £10
South Stand: Adults: £12.00 Concessions/Juniors/OAP's: £8.00
Click for JJB Stadium Ground Guide.
Media Coverage
TV: The match is Live on Sky Sports 3 from 5:30pm with commentary from Eddie Hemmings, Mike Stephenson and Phil Clarke.
Radio:   95.1 BBC GMR will have coverage from 5:30pm
Net:  Bradford's community radio station BCB 96.7 has online commentary via http://www.bcb.yorks.com.
Opposition Views
Other Links
Official Website
Bradford Forum
Prediction
Wigan 20 Bradford 18
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