Leeds and Wigan can cover the handicaps at home in Friday's games according to our man Phil Spink…
“Wigan have notched up big scores in their last two home games, beating tonight's opponents 52-10 a month ago…”
Rhinos to take another step towards safety
Leeds Rhinos v Catalans Dragons
Friday August 9, 19:45 BST
Live on Sky Sports Arena
There could be light at the end of the tunnel for the Leeds Rhinos after an awful 2019 and they can notch up another win over Catalans Dragons in Friday's televised game.
The Headingley stragglers turned what was being billed as a ‘relegation four-pointer‘ against Huddersfield last week into a rout as they battered their hapless hosts 44-0 to lift themselves into eighth in the table on points difference. They beat tonight's opponents 31-12 on home soil just six weeks ago and will be good value to cover the handicap again if picking up where they left off at the John Smith's Stadium. Winger Tom Briscoe suffered a season-ending ACL injury in that game and is replaced in the side by brother Luke.
The Dragons were 30-10 winners over Warrington on Saturday in a match that made the headlines for all the wrong reasons but have dodged a bullet, with three of their five players up against the disciplinary committee after those ugly scenes avoiding bans, though they'll be without the influential Sam Tomkins and Michael McIlorum who were both red carded, while they'll also miss backs Fouad Yaha and Samisoni Langi.
They've lost eight of their fourteen games on the road this year, including a 40-14 thumping at Salford a fortnight ago.
Back Leeds to enjoy another good Friday.
In-form Wigan out to impress again at home
Wigan Warriors vs. Hull Kingston Rovers
Friday August 9, 19:45 BST
Reigning Champions Wigan can smell Old Trafford again and can notch up an eighth win in nine games against relegation-threatened Hull Kingston Rovers.
The mighty St Helens are the only team to have beaten the resurgent Warriors in the last two months and Adrian Lam's men closed the gap on third-placed Hull FC with a Zak Hardaker-inspired 15-14 win over the Black and Whites last week. They've notched up big scores in their last two home games, beating tonight's opponents 52-10 a month ago before putting 46 past Wakefield.
England captain Sean O'Loughlin is set to be out until the play-offs, but the speedy Bevan French, signed from Parramatta, could be set for his Wigan debut and will light up Super League.
Rovers gained a crucial 27-26 win over Castleford last week, fighting back from 26-14 down and grabbing the two points to move clear of London Broncos at the bottom of the table thanks to Danny McGuire's golden point goal. Tony Smith's side haven't won back-to-back league games all season though, and could be set for another long eighty minutes at the DW Stadium if a flourishing Wigan are in anything like the mood they were five weeks ago when running in nine tries against them.