St Helens v Wigan: Predicted line-ups and late injury news

Sunday sees St Helens and Wigan do battle in a long-awaited Grand Final rematch. The pair battled it out in one of the greatest Grand Finals ever last season but last year’s Grand Finalists desperately need a win in this fixture not only to secure local bragging rights but to cast aside the doubts circling both sides. St Helens have lost to Catalans and Warrington recently. Meanwhile, Wigan are looking to avoid a fifth straight defeat.

Although plenty of the talk going into this game centres around Wigan’s injury problems, the Saints aren’t without their own. Jonny Lomax is a doubt for the derby whilst Joel Thompson and Matty Lees won’t feature. That means the Saints have a severe lack of forwards. However, it could be said they have too many backs. Kristian Woolf will have to whittle down Tommy Makinson, Kevin Naiqama, Mark Percival, Regan Grace and Jack Welsby into the perfect quartet to beat Wigan. However, it is possible that – like against Huddersfield in the Challenge Cup – Woolf will name Welsby on the bench alongside Aaron Smith. Smith came on at loose-forward against the Giants and he could do so again to ameliorate the loss of their big men.

For the Warriors it’s one in one out in terms of their starting pack. Brad Singleton returns from suspension freeing up Oliver Partington to move back to loose-forward following the injury to Morgan Smithies. Their fullback conundrum continues to plague Adrian Lam however it’s likely Jackson Hastings will remain there.

St Helens
1 Lachlan Coote
2 Tommy Makinson
3 Kevin Naiqama
4 Mark Percival
5 Regan Grace
6 Jonny Lomax
7 Theo Fages
8 Alex Walmsley
9 James Roby
15 Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook
14 Sione Mata’utia
20 Joe Batchelor
13 Morgan Knowles
Substitutes
16 Kyle Amor
17 Agnatius Paasi
18 Jack Welsby
19 Aaron Smith

Wigan
31 Jackson Hastings
22 Jake Bibby
11 Willie Isa
4 Oliver Gildart
5 Liam Marshall
20 Harry Smith
7 Thomas Leuluai
8 Brad Singleton
9 Sam Powell
21 Ethan Havard
12 Liam Farrell
27 Kai Pearce-Paul
14 Oliver Partington
Substitutes
10 Joe Bullock
19 Liam Byrne
25 Joe Shorrocks
34 Brad O’Neill

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