Betfred Super League: Wigan Head To France For Top-Of-The-Table Battle

The Dragons and Warriors have been the league's form teams
07:00, 26 Aug 2023

While the Wigan Warriors' trip to Catalans Dragons on Saturday night is due to be the last fixture between the two sides this season, one gets a feeling there may yet be another chapter to play out.

The Dragons are on course to win the League Leaders' Shield, while the Warriors are just four points behind, making a play-off clash between the pair a distinct possibility. This weekend's game could have a say in that, or at the very least give a barometer of what might follow come play-off time. Here's everything you need to know about Saturday's action.

Hull FC v Warrington Wolves

Where: MKM Stadium, Hull.

When: 3pm (BST)

TV: No UK screening

Hull's last five: Lost 12-13 @ Wigan (Rd 22), Won 42-4 v Wakefield (Rd 21), Lost 12-19 @ Huddersfield (Rd 20), Won 36-18 v Castleford (Rd 19), Won 16-6 @ Hull KR (Rd 18)

Warrington's last five: Lost 22-24 @ Leeds (Rd 22), Lost 10-30 v Catalans (Rd 21), Lost 6-42 @ Wakefield (Rd 20), Lost 12-26 @ Wigan (Rd 19), Lost 20-24 v St Helens (Rd 18)

Betfred match winner odds (80 minutes): Hull FC 8/13, Warrington 7/5, draw 18/1

First try scorer odds: Matty Ashton (Warrington) 8/1, Matt Dufty (Warrington) 8/1, Adam Swift (Hull FC) 8/1, Darnell McIntosh (Hull FC) 9/1, Josh Thewlis (Warrington) 10/1


Stefan Ratchford needs eight points to reach 1,500 for Warrington Wolves, while Ben Currie is one try away from 100 in his senior career.


Previous meetings:

Round 14, 2023: Hull FC 30, Warrington Wolves 18

Round 7, 2023: Warrington Wolves 34, Hull FC 6

Round 16, 2022: Warrington Wolves 4, Hull FC 0

Round 9, 2022: Hull FC 18, Warrington Wolves 16

Round 3, 2021: Hull FC 14, Warrington Wolves 14

Total Super League meetings: 60 (Hull FC 24, Warrington 33, three draws)

While Hull FC's recent form hasn't been the most convincing - one win in three, four in nine - they have at least kept themselves in the running for the top six with five games left to play. Tony Smith will be hoping for one last push from an Airlie Birds side which has found it difficult stringing together multiple wins in recent times.

Warrington just need to find one victory from somewhere - anywhere - right now. They have lost eight straight in all competitions, dropping from first to fifth and now finding themselves in grave danger of falling out of the play-off reckoning. Having sacked Daryl Powell and appointed rookie coach Sam Burgess for 2024, they need to hope that interim coach Gary Chambers can carry enough weight in the room that the current crop of players can galvanise themselves for the final five rounds.

Sportsman stat: A Hull FC win would give them two victories from three against Warrington this season. They haven't had a winning record over the Wolves since 2016, when they won two of three league games and also beat them in the Challenge Cup final at Wembley, Hull's first ever victory at the national stadium.

Catalans Dragons v Wigan Warriors

Where: Stade Gilbert Brutus, Perpignan.

When: 7pm (local)/6pm (BST)

TV: Sky Sports Arena

Catalans' last five: Won 30-14 @ Leigh (Rd 22), Won 30-10 @ Warrington (Rd 21), Won 42-0 v Salford (Rd 20), Won 14-12 @ St Helens (Rd 19), Lost 14-22 v Huddersfield (Rd 18)

Wigan's last five: Won 13-12 v Hull FC (Rd 22), Won 64-6 v Hull KR (Rd 21), Won 44-18 v Leigh (Rd 20), Won 26-12 v Warrington (Rd 19), Lost 26-27 @ Wakefield (Rd 18)

Betfred match winner odds (80 minutes): Catalans 2/5, Wigan 21/10, draw 18/1

First try scorer oddsTom Johnstone (Catalans) 6/1, Tom Davies (Catalans) 7/1, Abbas Miski (Wigan) 8/1, Liam Marshall (Wigan) 8/1, Bevan French (Wigan) 9/1


Matt Whitley is one game short of 200 in his career, while opposite number Willie Isa is on 199 for Wigan Warriors since debuting with them against the Dragons in 2016. Harry Smith is 10 points away from reaching 500 in his Wigan career.


Previous meetings:

Round 14, 2023: Catalans Dragons 46, Wigan Warriors 22

Round 4, 2023: Wigan Warriors 10, Catalans Dragons 18

Round 27, 2022: Wigan Warriors 48, Catalans Dragons 4

Round 5, 2022: Catalans Dragons 28, Wigan Warriors 0

Round 25, 2021: Wigan Warriors 12, Catalans Dragons 8

Total Super League meetings: 44 (Catalans 13, Wigan 30, one draw)

Aside from a shock home defeat to Huddersfield Giants in Round 18, Catalans' form since April has been exemplary. They have strung together 11 wins in 12 matches since then, making them huge favourites to win the Shield after 27 rounds. But a defeat to Wigan would start to set a few nerves in heading into the final four rounds, and Steve McNamara will be warning his players that this is likely their biggest test of 2023 to date.

Wigan's recent form is similar to their hosts', with only an extra-time defeat to Wakefield blotting their copybook over the last eight rounds. That form put them in the top two heading into Round 23 but with Salford Red Devils, Leeds Rhinos, Castleford Tigers and Leigh Leopards to come, they won't want to leave their fate down to the latter fixtures and will be looking for a statement win in France to give them some extra breathing space.

Sportsman stat: This will be Catalans' 48th game against Wigan in all competitions. Only against St Helens (49) have they played more matches since their integration into the Super League in 2006.


*18+ | BeGambleAware | Odds Subject to Change

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