Well 7 rounds in, and the incumbent League Leaders are bottom, I think De ja vu has returned to the LLS winners, as shown 12 months ago with Leeds. However, after six domestic defeats this season, Wire are in dire need of a win. Whilst riding high once again, Hull FC are riding on an impressive winning streak since the game during storm Doris. Who will win on Saturday, which is for us to find out, but for now, let us see the key battles for this one…
Brown vs. Kelly
Kevin Brown has not really been able to re-capture the magic he had against Brisbane, to be honest, none of the Wire have been. However, we have seen Brown play at his best for both Widnes and Wire, with his game changing kicks and his experience. Maybe if he plays how he did against Brisbane, then it could finally give Wire their first win of the campaign. On the other hand, Albert Kelly, the ex KR magician has crossed the city and moved to FC. He has brought back that form that seemed to have been missing last year, allowing for Mark Sneyd to play more freely. Could he be a headache again for the Primrose and Blue on Saturday?
Hill vs. Taylor
Chris Hill, the Wire Captain and England Prop, has been one of the only good things for the wire this year. He has started to bring leadership back into the Wolves, which was one of the key issues at the start of the year. With his big runs and his leadership, he has shown once again that he is one of the key influences for the Wire. Can he lead his pack to their first victory this week? In the FC camp, Scott Taylor, another England hopeful, was part of the Dream team from last year, and has shown this year why he should be on the plane to Australia at the end of the year, with 159 tackles and 604 metres so far this year. Will he make the difference on Saturday, with Wires leaky defence?
Westwood vs. Ellis
Bennie Westwood, a Wire legend, being at the club for 15 years, and is one of the biggest impacts, for good and bad reasons. He is a key influence when it comes to leading the pack, and even with his age, he can still make that impact. I think, if he plays this weekend, he will make that impact, and could lead the Wire youngster against FC big boys. Whilst Gareth Ellis, FCs Captain, and also a big impact for FC, just like Westwood. The old Guard for both clubs could make that impact coming off the bench and could be influential when called upon.
Well, I do not think the result is in doubt, an FC win, and even though I would love Wire to win, I just do not think it is going to happen. However, Wires saving grace is that Danny Houghton is not in the Squad for Lee Radford this weekend, which could be an unfortunate miss for the black and whites. However, I just cannot see Wire taking advantage of this, and testing their youngster Jez Litten. Therefore, I am going with a FC win by 10, due to the lack of confidence on Wire behalf, and the fact that FC’s back line will out play Wires.
Wire- Clark (Even though he won’t have a key battle this weekend, he is one of the players who will keep on going until that final hooter, especially with his dummy half running, and his determination to keep going)
Wire have made two changed from the Game against Sts last week, Bringing Ryan Atkins and George King (Both returning from injuries) in for Andre Savelio and Dom Crosby. Whilst Hull have made two changes of their own, with Jansin Turgut and Youngster Jez Litten brought in for the Injured Man of Steel Danny Houghton and Jack Downs. Here are the two squads for this Saturday’s game.
Ryan Atkins, Kevin Brown, Daryl Clark, Mike Cooper, Brad Dwyer, Rhys Evans, Kurt Gidley, Chris Hill, Jack Hughes, Jack Johnson, George King, Toby King, Harvey Livett, Joe Philbin, Stefan Ratchford, Matty Russell, Ashton Sims, Joe Westerman, Ben Westwood
Jamie Shaul, Mahe Fonua, Josh Griffin, Albert Kelly, Marc Sneyd, Scott Taylor, Liam Watts, Mark Minichiello, Gareth Ellis, Jake Connor, Chris Green, Jordan Thompson, Danny Washbrook, Steve Michaels, Sika Manu, Josh Bowden, Jansin Turgut, Brad Fash, Jez Litten
Warrington Wolves vs. Hull FC, Saturday 1st April 2017, 3PM, Halliwell Jones Stadium