The Sky Cameras are at Langtree Park for Friday night Rugby where Hull FC are the visitors.
A 2nd half comeback came just too late for FC last week as they gave leaders Castleford a fright. St Helens themselves nearly come from behind to beat Leeds but just lost out by 2 points.
Saints Coach Justin Holbrook can welcome back Mark Percival but Matty Smith is out with the eye injury picked up at Headingley.
Lee Radford has named the same squad that narrowly lost at Castleford.
This is a big game for both sides as a win for Hull will take them 3 points ahead of 5th placed Wakefield whereas a Saints win would all but guarantee them a place in the top 8 at the split in 3 games time.
Super League sponsors Betfred make St Helens slight favourites at 5/6 to win this and that may look good value when you consider they’ve only lost once at home this season, Hull though have only lost twice on the road, 3 if you count the heavy defeat to Saints at magic, so something will have to give here.
For all Saints home record is very impressive they have been helped by late wins against Wigan and Salford recently, a poor start gave Hull too much to do at Castleford last week but they scored more tries than the runaway League leaders and nearly became the 1st visiting side to win at the jungle. That followed a very impressive win at Salford, who are also in the top 4 and only Castleford have won more games on the road than the black and whites.
Lee Radford has managed his squad very well recently but with 3 weeks till the cup semi final they have picked their strongest available for tonight and can land odds of around even money by winning this one.
It should be a tense close affair, and maybe better to take the 2 point start on the handicap for the visitors, but I think FC can be only the 2nd side to win at Langtree this season, they had a very impressive win in the cup here last season and whilst it may not be as convincing as that I think they can win this by 6-10 points.
I’m still not convinced by St Helens this year but Hull look the real deal and still on course to reach both finals.
Adam Swift and Albert Kelly head 1st try lists at around 10/1, Fonua landed for us last week and at 12/1 I see no reason to look elsewhere this time , Jonny Lomax at 18/1 looks good value for the Red V.
Finally the man of the match, a wide open market as always, Sneyd heads the market at 7/1 and as kicking could be crucial here he just gets my vote over Kelly and Houghton at around 8/1.
As for Saints, Fages is the shortest price at 8/1 but Roby looked to be getting back to form in recent weeks and I’d just prefer him at 10/1, the retuning Percival is a decent alternative at 11/1 but it’s Roby and Sneyd for me.
As extra game on Sky this weekend as Wigan make the trip to Perpignan to take on Catalans.
With the French side losing Yaha, Bird and Garcia through suspension Wigan are a very short 4/11 to win this.
The Dragons home form is nowhere near as strong as it has been in recent years and they were lucky to beat Leigh last week.
Shaun Wane has most his players back now so you have to think Wigan can win this, you’d certainly want more than around 2/1 for the French side given their poor form but I do think they can stay inside the 8 point start they are given on the handicap. Wigan need a win to guarantee a place in the Super 8, and it’s worth noting that last week was their 1st Super League win in 9 they are now unbeaten in 3 League and Cup games.
A close high scoring game could be on the cards like last week and I think Wigan can win this by around 1-5 points.
Joe Burgess is back on the wing where he’s most effective and is good value at 8/1 to score the 1st try, Kristen Inu at 14/1 looks a good alternative.
Wigan host Warrington next Thursday, as always please gamble responsibly.