Catalans Dragons vs St Helens: Team news, match preview and score prediction

We’re treated to another Grand Final rematch this weekend as Catalans and St Helens butt heads for the third time this season.

The Dragons haven’t beaten the Saints since their dramatic comeback win at the Magic Weekend to claim the League Leaders’ Shield, but since the heartache of losing at Old Trafford they’ve been second best when against the Champions.

After a defeat last week to Castleford, the Dragons also find themselves further of the pace setting Saints making a win here a must.

Team News

The Dragons will be without Arthur Mourgue, Tom Davies, Mike McMeeken and Jordan Dezaria for this game. Fortunately, Dean Whare is back after 14 weeks out.

After missing the game against Leeds last week, Will Hopoate drops out of the 21-man squad this week as does Sam Royale. They’re replaced by Sione Mata’utia and James Bell who are back from suspension.

Match Preview – Key Battles:

Mitchell Pearce vs Jonny Lomax: Perhaps the two best halfbacks in the league collide tomorrow as try scoring sensation Mitchell Pearce takes on Super League’s leading halfback for the last five years in Jonny Lomax. Both are great leaders and organisers and will be looking to guide the direction of the game.

Michael McIlorum vs James Roby: Picked as England number one for the Combined Nations clash, Michael McIlorum is the front runner to be England’s hooker at the World Cup. However, he’ll come up against the former England number nine in James Roby who is still regarded as some as the best nine in the country despite his international retirement. The answer then to who is the leading number nine at present could be answered tomorrow.

Sam Kasiano vs Agnatius Paasi: One of my favourite things to see when Catalans and Saints collide is these two coming off the bench. Two of the best impact subs around, they can turn the game on its head with brutal runs. Who will give their side the edge?

Where the game will be won and lost:

When these two meet, the middle third is always the most important. The side who can get on top of the opposition in the middle will likely win this one especially with the heat set to exhaust a side on the back foot. Recently, it’s been the Saints middles dominating will that be the case again tomorrow?

Score Prediction: Catalans Dragons 16-20 St Helens

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