Wigan are the only unbeaten team heading into Round 6 following Castleford’s surprise loss to Salford.
The Warriors did drop their first points of the season against Huddersfield, but the 16-all draw means Shaun Wane’s men stand along at the top of the table ahead of the visit of Hull FC on Sunday.
Below if a preview of every game with predictions, including exclusive insight from BetFred’s Pete Spencer.
Wakefield v Leigh – 20:00 March 23rd
Leigh go in search of their first-ever Super League away victory on Thursday when they tackle Wakefield Trinity. The Centurions have already passed the number of victories they secured in 2005 and next on their hit-list is success on the road. Leigh did win at Wakefield in May 2015 and they would love to repeat that 36-30 triumph this week. Wakefield went down to Leeds in their last outing while Leigh inflicted more misery on out-of-sorts Warrington Wolves. Trinity head coach Chris Chester has made two changes to his squad with Keegan Hirst and James Batchelor replacing Mason Caton-Brown and Mikey Sio. Leigh are without former Catalans Dragons forward Glenn Stewart after he picked up a two-match ban for a high tackle on Wolves’ Kevin Brown.
Match odds: Wakefield 8/11 Draw 25/1 Leigh 6/5
TGT says: Wakefield by 4
Betfred says: The defensive performance last week when Leigh beat Warrington was something. Gareth Hock has been playing so well for them – he could very well be one to look at for first try and is a very generous 22/1 for him to be first try scorer in the match. But Leigh were so good last week, they might have to be looked at again.
Huddersfield Giants v Leeds Rhinos – 20:00 March 24th
Huddersfield welcome West Yorkshire rivals Leeds to the John Smith’s Stadium on Friday on the back of an impressive point at Wigan. The Giants have been inconsistent this season and head coach Rick Stone will have been delighted with his charges’ resolve at the DW Stadium. Leeds are looking more like the treble winners of 2015 having brushed aside Wakefield on home soil last week. The Giants beat Leeds three times at home last season and have largely dominated the Rhinos with the exception of the visitors’ last-gasp success in September 2015 courtesy of Ryan Hall’s memorable score. Dale Ferguson is available for Huddersfield while Leeds have veteran Jamie Jones-Buchanan back following a foot injury.
Match odds: Huddersfield 15/8 Draw 25/1 Leeds 4/9
TGT says: Leeds by 8
Betfred says: Leeds beat Wakefield so they are looking for another win and the row that seems to be coming up with Danny Brough at Huddersfield could be hampering them even though they claim it is ‘false news’ but we will see how, if at all that impacts on them. We have certainly been seeing money on Leeds for this one.
St Helens v Warrington Wolves – 20:00 March 24th
St Helens bagged their second victory of the season against Catalans Dragons although Warrington are surprisingly without a victory five games into the new season. Saints eased the pressure on head coach Kieron Cunningham following a fine 28-24 triumph in Perpignan, but Warrington were far from their best in going down 22-8 at Leigh. A win for St Helens would see them move into a top eight, but for a Warrington they need victories in order to avoid finishing in the bottom four and qualifying for the middle 8s. Former Wigan man Matty Smith could make his second debut for St Helens after recovering from a broken leg while full-back Stefan Ratchford is in line for make his first appearance of the season for Wolves.
Match odds: St Helens 4/7 Draw 22/1 Warrington 6/4
TGT says: St Helens by 6
Betfred says: This is the game of the weekend and the pressure on both coaches is huge – both are in need of a win and at the start of the season nobody would have thought they would be in this position. Warrington are getting some players back so they still look an interesting price but we are seeing a lot of money for Saints in this one.
Widnes Vikings v Salford Red Devils – 20:00 March 24th
It’s been a season of struggle so far for Widnes with just one point to their name and things do not get any easier when they line up against Salford. The Vikings were dismantled by Hull FC last time out. Denis Betts’ side are the lowest scorers in the competition and are struggling without injured playmaker Joe Mellor. Salford are much improved on last term and pulled off one of the shocks of the season on Sunday after securing a late 13-12 victory over high-flying Castleford. Sam Brooks comes in to replace the injured Hep Cahill for Widnes while Josh Jones and prop Lama Tasi are back for Ian Watson’s Salford.
Match odds: Widnes 7/4 Draw 22/1 Salford 1/2
TGT says: Salford by 12
Betfred says: We always get good money for Salford and this week is no different – but Widnes at plus 6 could be appealing and they are due a good performance but Salford are on a role following that great win over Castleford last week.
Wigan Warriors v Hull FC – 20:00 March 24th
Wigan maintained their unbeaten start to the season after being held by Huddersfield, although head coach Shaun Wane has a massive injury list to contend with ahead of the visit of Hull FC. Talismanic skipper Sean O’Loughlin is the latest casualty in the club’s busy treatment room and the number of absentees for the World Club Champions could give Lee Radford’s men the edge. Marc Snyed looks back to his best while Albert Kelly looks an astute addition for the Black and White. Wane will be without the likes of Sam Tomkins, Dominic Manfredi, Oliver Gildart, Joe Burgess, Lewis Tierney, Michael McIlorum, John Bateman and Liam Farrell. The visitors are without Carlos Tuimavave and Fetuli Talanoa while Liam Watts and Jansin Turgut are suspended.
Match odds: Wigan 8/11 Draw 22/1 Hull 6/5
TGT says: Hull FC by 8
Betfred says: Wigan are coming into the game with great momentum but the betting is quite close on this. Wigan are the established team and are starting to dominate again and we cannot see anything other than a home win in this one.
Castleford Tigers v Catalans Dragons – 15:30 March 26th
Daryl Powell will be looking for a response from his Castleford troops after tasting defeat to Salford while Catalans are now three games without a win after going down late to St Helens. The Tigers failed to register a single second-half point away to the Red Devils while a sensational offload from French playmaker Theo Fages left the Dragons licking their wounds. Winger Greg Minikin is likely to miss out after dislocating his shoulder against Salford. Centre Jake Webster could return while Oli Holmes is back in training after a knee injury. The Dragons were missing influential Greg Bird against Saints after he needed stiches in a head wound sustained against Leeds. Castleford are unbeaten in their last four home games against the French club.
Match odds: Castleford 2/11 Draw 33/1 Catalans 4/1
TGT says: Castleford by 16
Betfred says: Catalans are by some way the biggest price of the weekend and they have been a bit unlucky this season. This should be a fascinating game and hard to call, despite what the odds are saying.