Go with Giants and Rhinos
Ian Millward looks ahead to Thursday and Friday's action in the First Utility Super League and has picked out a double.
Huddersfield (+4) v Wigan (2000BST)
Here we have two teams in good form as both have won five of their last six and both have players back from injury. Huddersfield do have a good record against Wigan as they won home and away last year and they also won the first encounter this time around at the DW Stadium. From my experience, I do think Wigan will have one eye on the Challenge Cup next week while the return of Sean O'Loughlin for them is fantastic. But they will have their hands full against a big Huddersfield pack and a team growing in confidence. They had a really disappointing loss last week but I expect them to hit back here and do extremely well. Danny Brough always causes problems for Wigan with his outstanding kicking game and I also think the forward pack for the visitors won't get much rest as they are young, inexperienced and have some key players out, including hooker Michael McIlorum. I expect the Giants to win so they look good with a start.
Warrington v Leeds (scratch) (2000BST)
Warrington suffered a major blow this week with the loss of Ben Westwood and he has been one of the major reasons why their form has turned around - he is one of the most intimidating forwards in Super League. I really like the look of Leeds in this who are really warming to the task of winning the competition. I still think that the cohesion is not consistent enough in the Warrington halves and the back three for Leeds have been outstanding. Leeds will be physically too strong for the Wolves and have been in better form against the better teams so I will stick with them to win as they are the best outfit in Super League right now.
St Helens v Salford (+20) (2000BST)
I had a good look at Salford's last game against Wigan and I can see things coming together for them. They have looked to be lacking in confidence in terms of maintaining possession and building pressure but one area where they have improved is in defence. They have shown enough to suggest they can contain Saints here and the start they get is great. St Helens have lost two of their last five and been a bit hot and cold with a couple of key players still missing. I think Salford are quite close to a victory so the start is appealing considering they have a few ex-St Helens players in their ranks.
Widnes v Catalan (+4) (2000BST)
The travelling again seems to be the bugbear for the Dragons and they don't have a great record on this surface. The last encounter between these two was a 32-32 draw and all the games when these two have faced one another over the past four years have seen 60-plus scored so you are looking at the overs in the total points market. Widnes are a marvel at the moment as they are winning games and competitive but do rely heavily on stand-off Kevin Brown. I think this could be the game for Leon Pryce to step up for Catalan as his form has been very good and his match-up with Brown should be fascinating. Whoever has the best 80 minutes and has most influence will be key but I just fancy Widnes with home advantage in a high-scoring clash.