Sunday, September 25, 2022

Super League: Saturday’s talking points and team news

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Hull KR head coach Tony Smith hopes his side can rediscover their confidence for the visit of Catalans

We look at what is being said and team news as Round 13 of the Betfred Super League season concludes with two games on Saturday…

Hull Kingston Rovers vs Catalans Dragons (12.30pm)

Tony Smith does not believe Hull KR’s recent downturn in form is related to him announcing his decision to leave at the end of the season.

Rovers suffered a 32-0 defeat away to Castleford Tigers last weekend, leaving them seventh in the table on points difference from Lee Radford’s side.

Highlights of the match between Castleford Tigers and Hull Kingston Rovers in the Betfred Super League

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Highlights of the match between Castleford Tigers and Hull Kingston Rovers in the Betfred Super League

Highlights of the match between Castleford Tigers and Hull Kingston Rovers in the Betfred Super League

It does not get any easier for them as they host second-placed Catalans Dragons in the Saturday lunchtime kick-off, but head coach Smith believes it is more down to his team’s three-game losing streak and a lack of confidence.

“I don’t think it’s down to my announcement, I think it’s down to some of the last couple of games and performances,” Smith said. “We care, I care, we all care about it.

“I can understand the fans’ frustration, we’re frustrated too and we’re sorry that we’re not delivering better performances.

“There’s no doubt about that. We’re not shying away from that, but I don’t think it’s down to any announcements. They’re good boys.

“We’re low on confidence at the moment and probably going about things in the wrong way in terms of forcing things too much early doors.”

Highlights of the match between Catalans Dragons and Warrington Wolves in the Betfred Super League

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Highlights of the match between Catalans Dragons and Warrington Wolves in the Betfred Super League

Highlights of the match between Catalans Dragons and Warrington Wolves in the Betfred Super League

Smith has made two changes to his 21-man squad due to Brad Takairangi and Matt Parcell both being injured. Will Tate replaces the former, while young hooker Charlie Cavanaugh could make his first senior appearance after being named in place of the latter.

Catalans boss Steve McNamara has been able to select an unchanged squad from last week’s 40-8 win at home to Warrington Wolves for the trip to Sewell Group Craven Park, although Josh Drinkwater, Mike McMeeken, Samisoni Langi and Dean Whare are all out due to injury.

Named squads

Hull Kingston Rovers: Lachlan Coote, Ben Crooks, Shaun Kenny-Dowall, Ryan Hall, Albert Vete, George King, Dean Hadley, Matty Storton, Jez Litten, Luis Johnson, Korbin Sims, Elliot Minchella, Jimmy Keinhorst, Will Dagger, Rowan Milnes, Will Maher, Ethan Ryan, Greg Richards, Frankie Halton, Will Tate, Charlie Cavanaugh.

Catalans Dragons: Arthur Mourgue, Tom Davies, Fouad Yaha, Mitchell Pearce, Gil Dudson, Micky McIlorum, Julian Bousquet, Matt Whitley, Benjamin Garcia, Alrix Da Costa, Benjamin Jullien, Paul Seguier, Mickael Goudemand, Matthieu Laguerre, Arthur Romano, Tyrone May, Dylan Napa, Jordan Dezaria, Joe Chan, Sam Kasiano, Sam Tomkins.

Hull FC vs Wigan Warriors (3pm)

Matt Peet hopes the response he has seen from the players this week translates into them getting back to winning ways on Saturday afternoon away to Hull FC.

The Warriors were beaten 32-22 away to Huddersfield Giants in Round 12, with the two teams due to meet next Saturday in the Betfred Challenge Cup final.

Head coach Peet has identified the areas for improvement as his side seek to bounce back in Super League and set themselves up perfectly for the rematch with the Giants at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

“We came in the day after the game, players were really honest about the performance and we were back in at the start of the week to focus on the next game,” Peet said.

Highlights of Huddersfield Giants’ clash with Wigan Warriors in the Betfred Super League

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Highlights of Huddersfield Giants’ clash with Wigan Warriors in the Betfred Super League

Highlights of Huddersfield Giants’ clash with Wigan Warriors in the Betfred Super League

“Looking back on Huddersfield, everyone was disappointed, particularly the way we started the game, lack of physicality was the main thing.

“The lads have been great on the field – there’s been an intensity about sessions, which you would expect going into a big game against Hull.”

The only change to Peet’s squad sees Kaide Ellis drop out due to a one-match suspension, while opposite number Brett Hodgson has recalled Kane Evans and Cam Scott after their respective returns from injury.

Like Wigan, Hull FC are aiming to rebound from a loss last time out as well after being beaten 24-10 away to St Helens.

Highlights of the match between St Helens and Hull FC in the Betfred Super League

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Highlights of the match between St Helens and Hull FC in the Betfred Super League

Highlights of the match between St Helens and Hull FC in the Betfred Super League

“We probably tried to score too much in those early stages and didn’t show enough composure – when we settled down, we asked some good questions of them,” head coach Hodgson said. “I’m not too disheartened because we held our gloves up for large periods of the game.”

Named squads

Hull FC: Jake Connor, Adam Swift, Carlos Tuimavave, Josh Griffin, Darnell McIntosh, Josh Reynolds, Luke Gale, Ligi Sao, Danny Houghton, Chris Satae, Manu Ma’u, Jordan Lane, Joe Lovodua, Kane Evans, Jack Brown, Jordan Johnstone, Josh Bowden, Connor Wynne, Cameron Scott, Jamie Shaul, Scott Taylor.

Wigan Warriors: Bevan French, Jake Bibby, Iain Thornley, Liam Marshall, Cade Cust, Brad Singleton, Patrick Mago, Willie Isa, Liam Farrell, John Bateman, Morgan Smithies, Harry Smith, Oliver Partington, Ethan Havard, Liam Byrne, Joe Shorrocks, Jai Field, Abbas Miski, Sam Halsall, Brad O’Neill, Matty Nicholson.





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