St Helens travel to Headingley to face the Leeds Rhinos. Leeds will want to get back to winning ways after last week’s defeat to Castleford. On the other hand, Saints will want to capitalise on last Friday’s close-knit encounter with Salford.
Last Time Out
Leeds started the game with Castleford in a positive manner with an Ash Handley try. Castleford replied with a try from Greg Eden to go into half-time with an 8-6 lead. Further tries from Hardaker and Millington looked to have sealed the victory for Castleford. Cutherbertson scored in the 60th minute to give Leeds a fighting chance but a Luke Gale penalty and then a drop goal gave Castleford the two points to take them seven points clear.
St Helens led an impressive comeback to beat Salford 25-24. Trailing 24-8 with seven minutes to go. Tries from Roby (with his 100th career try), Grace and Lomax, finalised with a drop goal from Matty Smith from 40 metres out gave the Saints the win in the 80th minute.
A battle of the halves looks to be crucial in Thursday’s match-up. With McGuire and Burrow out for Leeds, Jordan Lilley and Liam Sutcliffe will have to pull out all of the stops to limit Theo Fages and Matty Smith’s partnership. Both seem to have found their feet and are really starting to become the backbone of the St Helens side.
With injuries to key players, Leeds do look like a much weaker side. Although they have been in better form than Saints this season, Saints’ side look to be a near-to-full strength with just Percival missing this week.
Saints by 6
Leeds have both Danny McGuire and Jamie Jones-Buchanan suspended as well as Burrow and Ferres out for six and eight weeks respectively. This means recalls for both Jordan Lilley and Jack Ormondroyd.
Saints have Mark Percival suspended this week with a one-match ban and Ryan Morgan is back in the squad, replacing Jake Spedding.
Leeds Rhinos (from): Carl Ablett, Jordan Baldwinson, Tom Briscoe, Adam Cuthbertson, Keith Galloway, Mitch Garbutt, Ashton Golding, Ryan Hall, Joel Moon, Jordan Lilley, Anothony Mullally, Jack Ormondroyd, Matt Parcell, Brad Singleton, Liam Sutcliffe, Jack Walker, Stevie Ward, Kallum Watkins.
St Helens (from): Kyle Amor, Luke Douglas, Theo Fages, Regan Grace, Morgan Knowles, Tommy Lee, Jonny Lomax, Tommy Makinson, Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Ryan Morgan, Mark Percival, Dominique Peyroux, James Roby, Matty Smith, Adam Swift, Zeb Taia, Luke Thompson, Alex Walmsley, Jon Wilkin.
Referee: James Child
Venue: Headingley, Leeds
Date/Time: Thursday 29th June 2017, 8pm