Betfred Super League: Coachless Wolves And Desperate Tigers Hunt Valuable Wins

Warrington face Catalans and Castleford host Huddersfield
07:00, 04 Aug 2023

It has been another incredible week in rugby league away from the field, with a coach sacked, a rules outcry over the weakening of teams and news that the next World Cup will take place Down Under in 2026.

But the Betfred Super League campaign is back front and centre on Friday as the run-in takes its latest turn for the fascinating. Here's everything you need to know about the trio of games coming up.

Castleford Tigers v Huddersfield Giants

Where: Mend-A-Hose Jungle, Castleford.

When: 8pm (BST)

TV: No UK screening

Castleford's last five: Lost 16-34 @ Hull KR (Rd 20), Lost 18-36 @ Hull FC (Rd 19), Lost 16-34 v Leigh (Rd 18), Lost 0-22 @ St Helens (Rd 17), Won 23-14 v Warrington (Rd 16)

Huddersfield's last five: Won 19-12 v Hull FC (Rd 20), Won 34-6 v Wakefield (Rd 19), Won 22-14 @ Catalans (Rd 18), Lost 6-22 @ Wigan (Rd 17), Lost 0-54 @ Leeds (Rd 16)

Betfred match winner odds (80 minutes): Castleford 8/5, Huddersfield 8/15, draw 18/1

First try scorer odds: Greg Eden (Castleford) 9/1, Sam Halsall (Huddersfield) 9/1, Jake Bibby (Huddersfield) 10/1, Elliot Wallis (Castleford) 11/1, Kevin Naiqama (Huddersfield) 11/1


Greg Eden is three tries away from 150 in his career, including 13 with tonight's opponents. Jermaine McGillvary is one away from 250.


Previous meetings:

Round 13, 2023: Huddersfield Giants 20, Castleford Tigers 4

Round 4, 2023: Huddersfield Giants 36, Castleford Tigers 6

Round 24, 2022: Huddersfield Giants 36, Castleford Tigers 10

Round 17, 2022: Castleford Tigers 26, Huddersfield Giants 18

Round 5, 2022: Huddersfield Giants 36, Castleford Tigers 24

Total Super League meetings: 54 (Castleford 30, Huddersfield 24, no draws)

Six weeks ago it wasn't even a question. Wakefield Trinity were going to be relegated. But after the sensational renaissance of Mark Applegarth's side and a continued slump for Castleford, it is the Tigers who are many people's pick for the drop. Only points difference is keeping them off the bottom, and with a massive clash against Trinity to follow in a fortnight this meeting with Huddersfield Giants is absolutely massive for Cas. One fears for Andy Last too if his team don't get a win on Friday ahead of a fortnight's break before the run-in gets serious.

Ian Watson was the public's choice for the next sacking just a few weeks ago but now the Huddersfield coach is revelling in a significant upturn in form which has them dreaming of an outside shot at the play-offs. Three wins on the bounce having them looking at their final eight fixtures with serious belief.

Sportsman stat: Huddersfield hadn't won back-to-back fixtures in 15 attempts before stringing together their current three-game victory streak.

Warrington Wolves v Catalans Dragons

Where: Halliwell Jones Stadium, Warrington.

When: 8pm (BST)

TV: Sky Sports Arena

Warrington's last five: Lost 6-42 @ Wakefield (Rd 20), Lost 12-26 @ Wigan (Rd 19), Lost 20-24 v St Helens (Rd 18), Lost 6-22 v Leeds (Rd 17), Lost 14-23 @ Castleford (Rd 16)

Catalans' last five: Won 42-0 v Salford (Rd 20), Won 14-12 @ St Helens (Rd 19), Lost 14-22 v Huddersfield (Rd 18), Won 28-18 @ Hull FC (Rd 17), Won 38-30 v Leigh (Rd 16)

Betfred match winner odds (80 minutes): Warrington 15/8, Catalans 4/9, draw 20/1

First try scorer odds: Tom Johnstone (Catalans) 5/1, Fouad Yaha (Catalans) 6/1, Tom Davies (Catalans) 7/1, Connor Wrench (Warrington) 8/1, Josh Thewlis (Warrington) 8/1


Ben Currie's 98 career tries put him within striking distance of a century.


Previous meetings:

Round 8, 2023: Catalans Dragons 14, Warrington Wolves 20

Round 18, 2022: Catalans Dragons 10, Warrington Wolves 36

Round 12, 2022: Catalans Dragons 40, Warrington Wolves 8

Round 4, 2022: Warrington Wolves 18, Catalans Dragons 24

Round 4, 2021: Catalans Dragons 8, Warrington Wolves 24

Total Super League meetings: 40 (Warrington 24, Catalans 15, one draw)

When Warrington Wolves won 20-14 at Catalans Dragons in Round 8 to remain perfect, nobody could have foreseen the slide the club would subsequently head on. Daryl Powell's sacking this week came on the back of six straight losses and eight in nine, leaving the Wolves right on the cusp of throwing away a play-off spot which at one point appeared a racing certainty.

To Catalans' credit, they have been quietly sensational for much of the last few months, putting together a run of nine wins in 10 to go four points clear at the top of Super League. Steve McNamara will be intent on keeping his side's foot on the throat of those chasing.

Sportsman stat: Catalans have scored exactly 14 points on seven occasions in league and cup competition this season, including twice against Warrington.

Wigan Warriors v Hull Kingston Rovers

Where: DW Stadium, Wigan.

When: 8pm (BST)

TV: No UK screening

Wigan's last five: Won 44-18 v Leigh (Rd 20), Won 26-12 v Warrington (Rd 19), Lost 26-27 @ Wakefield (Rd 18), Won 22-6 v Huddersfield (Rd 17), Won 26-6 @ Salford (Rd 16)

Hull KR's last five: Won 34-16 v Castleford (Rd 20), Won 19-18 @ Leeds (Rd 19), Lost 6-16 v Hull FC (Rd 18), Lost 4-34 @ Leigh (Rd 17), Won 28-12 v Wakefield (Rd 16)

Betfred match winner odds (80 minutes): Wigan 1/250, Hull KR 25/1, draw 66/1

First try scorer odds: Liam Marshall (Wigan) 9/2, Abbas Miski (Wigan) 9/2, Bevan French (Wigan) 5/1, Jai Field (Wigan) 6/1, Jake Wardle (Wigan) 9/1


Liam Byrne could make his 100th appearance for Wigan Warriors after being includied in the 21-man squad.


Previous meetings:

Round 13, 2023: Hull Kingston Rovers 22, Wigan Warriors 26

Round 1, 2023: Hull Kingston Rovers 27, Wigan Warriors 18

Round 26, 2022: Hull Kingston Rovers 38, Wigan Warriors 28

Round 21, 2022: Wigan Warriors 46, Hull Kingston Rovers 4

Round 1, 2022: Hull Kingston Rovers 10, Wigan Warriors 24

Total Super League meetings: 37 (Wigan 25, Hull KR 11, one draw)

Wigan Warriors' attempts to chase down Leigh Leopards and claim second spot on the ladder were handed a massive boost on Wednesday when Hull Kingston Rovers' squad list was announced. The Warriors are the shortest price to win ever offered by Betfred for a club rugby league fixture. Having subjected an under-strength Rovers to a club record 84-6 defeat in April 2013, they could well challenge that mark on Friday night.

Love it or hate it, Rovers have made their priorities clear with their squad selection: Next week's Betfred Challenge Cup final is the focus, and once that is negotiated they will be back to battling like crazy for a top-six spot. Willie Peters has named a 21-man squad which has just 44 Super League starts this season between them, with 12 having not played a minute for the Robins in league action in 2023. They have also included three players - Cesar Rouge, Isaac Shaw and Luke Thomas - who were signed this week on two-week loans solely to play this game.

Sportsman stat: The record Super League win is 96-16, by Bradford Bulls against the Salford City Reds in June 2000.


*18+ | BeGambleAware | Odds Subject to Change

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