How the Bookies See it
|Wakefield v St Helens||
|Hull v Wigan||
Wakefield Trinity fans have endured a real rollercoaster over recent weeks, with three wins, including fine victories over Salford and Leeds, and three defeats from their last six games. Their 16-41 reverse at home to Saints in the last game before the split could cast a cloud over preparations for this week’s tie, but fans will take heart from their current top-four status. St Helens made a late surge into the top eight, culminating in them inflicting Castleford’s first home defeat of the campaign, but three losses on the bounce since will concern coach Justin Holbrook. The Aussie has promised changes ahead of Thursday night in an effort to stop the rot.
Hull FC were brought back to earth with a bump last week, going down 38-26 to Leeds just days after clinching the Challenge Cup. The third-placed team have now lost their last two league games, but will fancy turning around their fortunes at home to the side they beat 18-14 at Wembley last month. Wigan Warriors followed up their cup final defeat with a 26-16 destruction of Saints. It was their third league win in a row and their seventh in nine games, suggesting they could be dark horses to sneak into the final four.
Revenge will be on Wigan’s minds when they run out at the KCOM stadium on Friday night. Having been written off after a shocking start, Warriors seem to have regained some of last season’s blistering form and are knocking on the door of the play-offs. A win against Hull as payback for the Challenge Cup final defeat would see them leapfrog the Black and Whites, thanks to a superior points difference.
Hull are a talented side, though, and will want to right the wrongs of last week’s poor showing at Headingley. They know a win will be almost enough to earn them a shot at making it to the Grand Final and home advantage should come into play.
BetVictor’s 8/11 isn’t massively attractive for a straight Hull win, but 6/4 from Betfred on Hull /Hull at Half Time/Full Time could tempt a few punters. That said, Wigan are one of the league’s form teams, and might be worth a look at 13/10 to win.
The best value of the round comes from Wakefield, who are posted as outsiders on home turf against Saints, despite being two places ahead of their rivals from Merseyside and in better form.
The visitors are still tinkering with their best line-up at this late stage and that makes 13/8 from Sky Bet on a Trinity win seem even more generous. Wakefield do not seem to get the respect they deserve from the bookies and that has proved fruitful for punters on a number of occasions this year. 13/5 on Wakey to be winning at both half and full time could easily come to pass, making it an even more gloomy night for the oddsmakers.
Sports.net’s Top Tip
|Wakefield v St Helens||
Wakefield to Win