Go Wild for Cats
Former Super League winner Ian Millward has picked out Wakefield as his best bet ahead of Sunday's action.
Every team goes through a dip at points in the year and I get the feeling that's what Leeds are doing right now. They've not been as impressive lately, the Challenge Cup will have had something to do with that - it takes it out of you. Catalans are starting to improve. They've got a good squad and now have Ian Henderson, their main playmaker, back. With him returning, it's made a massive difference to their confidence. Sam Williams at half-back, a player I've coached, brings a good kicking game to Catalans. Leeds have won their last four against the Dragons and were very convincing earlier in the season at Catalans but the French side are playing a lot better now with more confidence. Leeds have only won two of their last five so I'm going to go with the form team and back Catalans to cover the start.
Hull have picked up of late and won two of their last three. Last week away to Catalan was a close loss (20-16) and you think 'wow, they could come into some good form'. But Wakefield have won their last two and they've already played and beaten Hull this season. In fact they've won three of their last five against them. The return of Tim Smith has made a massive difference. They've got other players back from injury now too, including second row Taulima Tautai. Danny Kirmond has done well and Smith's organisational play and kicking game means they are looking like the side that made the play-offs in 2012. Wakefield are a hard team to battle against and they have a good history in this game. I'm with the Wildcats here and they can cover the start.
We have the new coach factor here with James Lowes in place. People talk about a 50 per cent win ratio after a team changes coach but if a new coach improves that much then teams would change their coach every other week and win 50 per cent of their games! Warrington have had some convincing wins of late, including a 46-10 one over the Bulls. However, Bradford did beat them at Odsal earlier this season on a bog track. The problem is it will be a fast track this time around. It's worth noting that in the last five meetings between these two, Warrington have scored double the amount of Bradford. They are far superior to the Bulls - Warrington have won six in a row, whereas Bradford have only won once in a long, long time. Their players are pretty average and they lack in many key areas. Warrington and Huddersfield are the league's form teams and I take the Wolves to win and cover here.
- Handicaps are with Sky Bet.
- Posted at 2050 BST on 26/06/2014.