Saints 6/5 to cut the gap on the Rhinos to 3 points

Challenge Cup TV games

The Sky Cameras are at Headingley for Thursday night Rugby where Justin Holbrook’s St Helens side are the visitors.

Team news has seen the odds for Saints tumble with Leeds missing Mcguire, Jones – Buchanan, Burrow and Ferres. Percival is banned for the visitors.

This is a big game for both sides and a win for St Helens would see them close the gap to Leeds in 4th place to only 3 points as we approach the league split.
The Rhinos were around 4/7 at the start of the week but they have drifted to around 4/7 with Saints coming in to around 6/5 from around 11/8.

Both sides have been a little inconsistent over the past few weeks, with Leeds losing 4 of their last 8 in Super League and St Helens winning 5 of their last 8. Saints form on the road though has been very poor with only 2 wins away from Langtree Park all season , and one of those being the impressive win at magic over Hull.

Despite the absentees Brian Mac will still be able to field a strong Leeds outfit that should just have too much for a Saints side that don’t travel well, the Rhinos gave Castleford a real test last week and the game was in the balance before Hardakers try. St Helens had to rely on a late fightback and a moment of madness from Robert Lui to beat Salford on the hooter and I take the hosts to win this by around 6-10 points.

The visitors used to have a good record in this fixture but Leeds have won 4 of the last 6 games these 2 have played at Headingley and I think they can carry on that trend tonight. For all Leeds do have players missing it’s the absence of Percival that could be key, he is the biggest attacking threat in the Saints backline and is also a reliable goal kicker.
Saints  get a 2 point start on the handicap and that would be a better option at slightly lesser odds if you fancy the visitors.

Hall and Swift head 1st try lists at around 10/1,  back in form Johnny Lomax looks better value at around 14/1,  but Hall looks decent value in Rhinos colours ahead of 12/1 Watkins.

Finally the man of the match,  Matty Smith won the game for Saints with a drop goal last week and with rain forecast he could be the value at 9/1, especially with his kicking game. Fages, Roby and Lomax are all contenders at around 10/1 in a wide open market.

As for the Rhinos Jordan Lilley should return to the side and could also take over kicking duties if he plays, he was man of the match on a couple of occasions last season and at 11/1 he’s value to get the award again tonight. Again it’s a wide open market with the likes of Parcell at 8/1 and market leader Joel Moon at 7/1, but it’s Lilley and Smith for me.

Top of the table clash between Castleford and Hull tomorrow as always please gamble responsibly.

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