Hull FC vs Castleford Tigers (Thursday 7.45pm)
It has been a tough run for Hull from the end of last season and now at the beginning of this one. The defeat against their city rivals last week won’t have pleased the fans but there were some promising signs there and the return of Jake Connor and Joe Westerman will definitely help. Castleford weren’t at their best last week but still looked solid against Catalans and even though they are missing two key forwards in Mike McMeeken and Matt Cook, I still think they will have too much for Hull.
Keith says: Castleford by 10
Wigan Warriors vs Leeds Rhinos (Friday 7.45pm)
Wigan were involved in a ferocious match against Saints last week and I thought they looked decent for the most part. They will obviously have one eye on next week’s World Club Challenge but they really need to get points on the board after starting on -2. This game is the battle of the new coaches and Leeds’ new signings are still trying bed in and that showed against Warrington last week. It will be close but I think the home side will edge it.
Keith says: Wigan by 4
Warrington Wolves vs Hull KR (Saturday 3pm)
Warrington were really impressive against Leeds last week, especially that 20-minute spell before half-time and they have every chance this year with the squad they have. Ben Westwood and Toby King are both suspended but I really don’t think it will affect them too much, which is testament to the strength of their squad. Hull KR fans will be in buoyant mood after last week and there is no doubt they have signed well, but I will be surprised if they get anything from this game.
Keith says: Warrington by 20
Catalans Dragons vs Huddersfield Giants (Saturday 5pm)
Both these sides really struggled last week, although Catalans were in the game against Castleford for a large period. As always I think the French outfit will be heavily reliant on their home form and they have to fancy themselves here, especially with the likes of Sam Tomkins making his home debut. Huddersfield are already picking up injuries and were well beaten at home to Salford last week, so I have to go with Catalans to win this one comfortably.
Keith says: Catalans by 14
Salford Red Devils vs London Broncos (Sunday 3pm)
Two teams who will be feeling great after round 1 and you can’t help but have been impressed with how Salford took apart Huddersfield. Jackson Hastings and Rob Lui linked up superbly in the halves to create space out wide for Niall Evalds and Ken Sio to grab all the points. London produced the performance of the weekend to beat Wakefield and Danny Ward will believe they can back that up this week. This could go either way!
Keith says: Salford by 4
Wakefield Trinity vs St Helens (Sunday 3pm)
Chris Chester said Sunday’s defeat to London was the worst performance he has seen since taking over at Wakefield and he will be expecting a response this week. It doesn’t come much tougher though against a Saints side that certainly showed they are just as good if not better than last season as they impressively defeated rivals Wigan. Wakefield beat St Helens at home around this time last year but I don’t think there will be a repeat of that here.
Keith says: St Helens by 24