Match Preview: Huddersfield (A) - 18th March 2011 at Galpharm Stadium
Posted by Bilko on March 16 2011 - 17:04
Wigan have their work cut out on Friday but I'm no pessimism from me!

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Extended News

Huddersfield Giants v Wigan Warriors - Engage Super League XVI Round 6.
Friday 18th March 2011. Kick Off 8:00pm at Galpharm Stadium.

Match Preview

I've been going on for at least twelve months about the impressive strength in depth of our squad but you don't ever expect to get so many players all out a once.

Sam Tomkins, Martin Gleeson, Pat Richards, Paul Deacon, Stuart Fielden, Joel Tomkins, Brett Finch and Eamon O'Carroll is a huge list of absences in anyone's book. I mean Wigan have 7 of their first 17 squad numbers absent, Huddersfield in comparison are missing just 1, and even that absence is the Number 16 Andy Raleigh.

So realistically Wigan should have no chance of winning this game. Would we fear Huddersfield is they came to Wigan without Scott Grix, Leroy Cudjoe, David Hodgson, Kevin Brown, Danny Brough, Eorl Crabtree and Luke O'Donnell? Or Warrington if they had Brett Hodgson, Matt King, Joel Monaghan, Lee Briers, Richie Myler, Adrian Morley and Ben Westwood all absent?

It's an easy one to answer isn't it! Neither of those sides would come anywhere near to competing with absences like that, but you know what, I reckon Wigan will give a damn good account of themselves on Friday.

I've watched a lot of these kids over the past few years and I know they'll have good games. Their is a huge difference between coming into a side with huge pressure to bare but on Friday Wigan have no pressure on to win the game. Huddersfield will be expected to wipe the floor with us but it doesn't always go like that. Lest we forget the brilliant day that was Good Friday 2003.

One of the problems for Wigan is that Huddersfield's pack is on fire. It leads the league in metres per ball carry and tackle busts. Somehow we have to slow them down but in fairness the pack isn't really my concern. Andy Coley, Paul Prescott, Jeff Lima, Ryan Hoffman, Lee Mossop, Liam Farrell, Chris Tuson will more than hold their own and if Dom Crosby is called upon he will plug a gap. He's been doing great work in our Under 20s, especially considering he only joined our academy system last year aged 19. Not often you get players coming into the youth ranks at that age, they normally get picked up early about age 16, so he has made awesome progression in twelve months if he gets given his chance. The coaching staff obviously think highly of him because he's seemingly ahead of Ben Davies who made five substitute appearances for the first team last season.

My biggest concern is direction on the last tackle. Against Hull every single last tackle in an attacking area seemed to be a bomb. I can't remember us trying a grubber. A bit of variety would be good. Big onus on Thomas Leuluai here in the absence of both Sam and Deacon.

Overall, we have to do what Hull did to us last Sunday. Frustrate the hell of out Huddersfield. We don't need to play dirty because if we do I think they could bully us, they like that type of game. But we shouldn't be afraid to just find touch on the last tackle. Keep turning them round, make the pace of the game slow and that will help us to compete. Doing that will keep the already sparse Huddersfield crowd quiet and that lack of atmosphere so often rubs off on the team playing at home.

Yesterday, coach Maguire recalled 20 year old Joe Mellor from his loan spell at Harlequins. Mellor had been playing Under 20s down there until he got his debut off the bench at St Helens last week. He was looking good for plenty of first team action here last season until a broken knee cap meant he missed the whole of the campaign except for three Under 20s games very late in the season. It's an interesting recall because it suggests he will play, or else what is the point? Big ask I think if he does start.

Another call up is 19 year old winger Ryan King. He's a good pacey winger and last weekend he was dealing with bombs in the Under 20s game very well indeed. It's a big difference though from playing at Orrell to playing in front of 8,000ish at Huddersfield. But like I said the pressure is off our team somewhat and that should theoretically help him, if he gets picked.

The call up of King though is an interesting one because Josh Charnley and Darrell Goulding out wide are pretty much set, you would think, so who is he covering for? Is he going to drop Stefan Marsh, play Josh Charnley at centre and King out wide? Or is Amos Roberts going to miss out again and we'll be forced to perhaps play Stefan Marsh at Full Back with Charnley at centre and King out wide?

I say an interesting choice because King has, pretty much, only played wing in the academy grades. Matty Russell on paper, if your just looking for an 18th/19th man to cover, would be a better option because he has played in both the centres and on the wing last year in the academy grades before converting to Full Back this year. He offers more cover, across positions, than King for me so it's just left me thinking that King will actually come in and play on the wing somehow. We shall see! Other academy watchers may have a different view. It's an interesting discussion I think that one.

Anyway.....like I said, despite the absences I think we'll give a great account of ourselves. I'm not expecting a win, but it wouldn't surprise me if it happened. If things do go tits up though I hope we won't get any moping about from Wigan fans. That's what Leeds fans were doing last year when they came to the DW with a similar lengthy injury list. "Oh we got injuries", "oh poor us", we never heard the end of it and they didn't shout a dicky bird all night expect when they scored. If the chips go down for us let's shout the stand down and have a party because whatever happens we will always be the current champions. :)

19 Man Squads

Wigan
IN:l Dom Crosby, Ryan King, Joe Mellor
OUT:l Sam Tomkins., Paul Deacon, Joel Tomkins
Full 19: Darrell Goulding, George Carmont, Thomas Leuluai, Michael McIlorum, Andy Coley, Harrison Hansen, Sean O'Loughlin, Paul Prescott, Jeff Lima, Ryan Hoffman, Amos Roberts, Lee Mossop, Liam Farrell, Chris Tuson, Stefan Marsh, Josh Charnley, Dom Crosby, Joe Mellor, Ryan King

Huddersfield
IN:l David Hodgson, Luke Robinson, Danny Kirmond, Joe Wardle
OUT:l Larne Partrick, Jermaine McGillvary, Jonny Molloy, Dale Ferguson
Full 19: Scott Grix, Michael Lawrence, Leroy Cudjoe, Lee Gilmour, David Hodgson, Kevin Brown, Danny Brough, Eorl Crabtree, Luke Robinson, Darrell Griffin, Luke O’Donnell, David Fa’alogo, David Faiumu, Shaun Lunt, Keith Mason, Danny Kirmond, Graeme Horne, Joe Wardle, Jamie Simpson

Match Referee

Ben Thaler (Wakefield) - Age 29
First Pro Game: Leigh 84 York 1 - 1st July 2001
First Super League Game: London 70 Leigh 16 - 29th May 2005
First Wigan Game: Wigan 38 Hull FC 16 - 15th September 2006

Wigan's Record when this referee is appointed

Wigan have Won 16 and Lost 4 (2 draws) from 22 appointments.
This Season: First Appointment

Video Referee

Ian Smith

Current Super League XVI League Positions

  Team P W D L F A Diff Pts
1st Huddersfield Giants 5 4 0 1 128 72 +56 8
5th Wigan Warriors 4 3 1 0 106 54 +52 7

Super League Team Stats - Averages per Game

- Wigan Hudds League Best League Worst
Attack Points per Game 26.5pts

25.6pts

Leeds 32pts Wakefield 17.6pts
Defence Pts Agst per Game 13.5pts

14.4pts

Wigan 13.5pts Salford 36.4pts
Tries Scored per Game 5

4.6

Leeds 5.8 (2 Teams) 3.2
Tries Conceded per Game 2.5

2.6

Wigan 2.5 Salford 6.4
Metres Made per Game 1313m

1400m

St Helens 1532m Hull KR 1143m
Ball Carries per Game 208

213

St Helens 238 Wakefield 187
Av.Metres per Ball Carry 6.3m

6.5m

Hudds'field 6.5m Salford 5.8m
Tackle Busts per Game 20

30.8

Hudds'field 30.8 Wakefield 17.6
Clean Breaks per Game 5.25

5

Leeds 7.8 Catalans 3
Offloads per Game 6.5

10

Leeds 17.8 Wigan 6.5
Attacking Kicks per Game 9

14

Leeds 14.4 Hull KR 8.6
Kicks in Gen Play per Game 20.7

20.4

St Helens 21.6 Leeds 17.2
Dummy Half Runs per Game 46.2

33.6

St Helens 52.6 Hull KR 21.6
Tackles per Game 354.2

315.8

Wigan 354.2 Leeds 273
Marker Tackles per Game 52.2

44.2

Wigan 52.2 Leeds 33.6
Errors per Game 10

13.8

Wigan 10

Warrington 15.8
Penalties Against per Game 8

8.4

Harlequins 5.2 Bradford 10.2

Individual Player Stats

- Wigan Huddersfield League Leader
Top Try Scorer (3 Players) 3

J.McGillvary 5

(5 Players) 5
Top Try Assister George Carmont 3

Kevin Brown 4

Kevin Sinfield 8
Top Metre Maker Sam Tomkins 644m

J.McGillvary 701m

James Roby 985m
Top Ball Carrier Sam Tomkins 81

Luke O'Donnell 97

James Roby 199
Top Tackle Buster Sam Tomkins 23

Scott Grix 24

Scott Grix 24
Top Clean Breaker Sam Tomkins 6

J.McGillvary 7

J.McGillvary 7
Top Offloader Carmont/Hoffman 5

David Faiumu 13

C.Schifcofske 20
Top Attacking Kicker Thomas Leuluai 14

Danny Brough 40

Danny Brough 40
Top General Kicker Sam Tomkins 32

Danny Brough 62

Danny Brough 62
Top DH Runner Mike McIlorum 76

Shaun Lunt 74

James Roby 163
Top Tackler Mike McIlorum 147

Luke O'Donnell 149

C.Fitzgibbon 237
Top Marker Tackler Liam Farrell 25

Shaun Lunt 24

C.Fitzgibbon 49
Worst Miss Tackler (3 Players) 7

McGillvary/Gilmour 9

E.Whitehead 24
Most Errors Josh Charnley 5

McGillvary/Brough 9

(2 Players) 12
Most Pens Conceded Sean O'Loughlin 7

David Fa'alogo 5

Michael Witt 11

Super League Era Head to Head Record

Overall Played 26 Wigan 17 Wins Huddersfield 9 Wins 0 Draws
At Hudds Played 13 Wigan 8 Wins Huddersfield 5 Wins 0 Draws

Wigan Form Guide - Last Six Matches - Won 4 Drawn 1 Lost 1

Date Opposition Competition Result Score
13th March Hull FC (H) SL 16 Round 5 Won 14-12
4th March Salford (A)

SL 16 Round 4

Won 32-16
27th February St George (H) World Challenge Lost 15-21
20th February Bradford (A) SL 16 Round 2 Won 44-10
12th February St Helens (N) SL 16 Round 1 Draw 16-16
2nd February Warrington (A) Pre Season Won 24-18

Wigan 2011 League Away from Home Record
P3: Won 2, Drawn 1, Lost 0 (Ranked: 3rd best in League) - 83.3% Win Rate.

Hull FC Form Guide - Last Six Matches - Won 3 Lost 3

Date Opposition Competition Result Score
13th March Bradford (H) SL 16 Round 5 Won 50-16
4th March Harlequins (A) SL 16 Round 4 Won 18-10
27th February Hull FC (H) SL 16 Round 3 Won 20-10
18th February Castleford (A) SL 16 Round 2 Lost 12-18
12th February Warrington (N) SL 16 Round 1 Won 28-18
23rd January Wakefield (A) Pre Season Won 24-16

Huddersfield 2011 League Home Record
Played 2: Won 2 and Lost 0 (Ranked: Best in League) - 100% Win Rate.

Previous Six Meetings at Galpharm Stadium

Date Opposition Report
16th May 2010 Huddersfield Giants 30 Wigan Warriors 38 Click Here
13th Sept 2009 Huddersfield Giants 48 Wigan Warriors 16 Click Here
16th Mar 2008 Huddersfield Giants 19 Wigan Warriors 20 Click Here
15th Apr 2007 Huddersfield Giants 41 Wigan Warriors 16 Click Here
22nd Apr 2006 Huddersfield Giants 14 Wigan Warriors 46 Click Here
18th Sept 2005 Huddersfield Giants 22 Wigan Warriors 36 Click Here

Hot Scoring Streaks

  • Josh Charnley has scored 9 tries in 9 Super League appearances to date (including loan spell at Hull KR).

  • George Carmont has scored 4 tries in 5 matches so far this season.

Cold Scoring Streaks

  • Paul Prescott holds the clubs current longest cold streak having now not scored a try in 76 appearances since scoring his only Wigan try in the away trip at Hull Kingston Rovers on 9th September 2007.
  • Paul Deacon has not scored a try in any of his last 17 appearances since he scored his only Wigan try at Salford on 11th April 2010.
  • Sean O'Loughlin has not scored a try in 15 appearances since scoring against Salford on 9th July 2010.
  • Andy Coley has not scored a try in 14 appearances since scoring against Catalans on 4th July 2010.

Ticket Details

Tickets are £21 for adults to sit in the away end but can be bought cheaper in advance from Wigan. Click Here for Details.

UK TV Coverage

Live Coverage Friday 7:30pm
Post Match Friday 9:55pm

Match Replay Friday Midnight
Match Replay Saturday 4:00am
Match Replay Saturday 10:30am
Highlights Sunday 11:55pm -
Match Replay Monday 1:00pm

International TV Coverage (All Times Local)

Australia Delay Late Sunday 0:15am Channel Nine -
New Zealand LIVE Monday Morning 9:00am Sky Sport 3 HD
Middle East LIVE Friday 11:30pm (UAE) OSN Sports 1 HD
Russia LIVE Friday 10:55pm (Moscow) NTV Sport -
Ukraine LIVE Friday 9:55pm NTV Sport -
Poland LIVE Friday 8:55pm Sport Klub -
Serbia LIVE Friday 9:00pm Sport Klub

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Bosnia LIVE Friday 9:00pm Sport Klub

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Montenegro LIVE Friday 9:00pm Sport Klub

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Radio Commentary

102.4 Wish FM are on air from 7:55pm with full match uninterrupted commentary. They are hoping injured Wigan player Stuart Fielden will be joining Mark Wilson in the commentary box.

BBC Radio Manchester (95.1FM) will also have match commentary, whilst updating on Salford's home match against Hull KR.

Bilko's Statistical prediction.

The stats suggest a Wigan Win by 2 Points.

Weather Forecast

Decent dry day. Might get a bit nipply at night though. Barely any wind mind you.