Before the season even started, Toulouse were up against it when Jonathan Ford left the club. Now Mark Kheirallah has done the same and two defeats from two has made matters worse.
However, they’ve finally had some good news with Olly Ashall-Bott signing from Huddersfield this week. They’ll want to bring that positivity straight into this game against Warrington.
The Wolves have won the opening two games of the season and there still seems to be room for improvement which should be quite daunting for the rest of the league.
Toulouse could give a debut to Olly Ashall-Bott despite signing the fullback just days ago. He was included in the 21-man squad whereas James Cunningham and Joseph Paulo have dropped out. Harrison Hansen, Dominique Peyroux, Mathieu Jussaume and Latrell Schaumkel are all still injured.
The big news for Warrington is the return of Daryl Clarke after he missed last week’s win over Castleford due to concussion protocols. Mike Cooper is also set to return having missed last week’s home opener. Concerningly, Daryl Powell has confirmed that Ben Currie faces a race against time to be fit for next weekend’s game following an ankle injury whilst Connor Wrench is also unavailable.
Chris Hankinson v Toby King: Former Wigan man Chris Hankinson has made a real positive start to life at Toulouse despite their struggles and appears to be one of their best attacking outlets. On the flip side of things, he’ll be tasked with dealing with Toby King who is one of the most dangerous centres in the league.
Tony Gigot v Gareth Widdop: A real mercurial talent, we’ve seen in the past the damage Tony Gigot can do to teams. After all, look back at his Lance Todd Trophy winning performance against the Wolves in the 2018 Challenge Cup Final. The Wolves will want to keep him quiet. Meanwhile, the Wire themselves have two world class halfbacks capable of tearing Toulouse apart and the way Gareth Widdop has started the season you can expect another big showing here.
Mitch Garbutt v Mike Cooper: One of Toulouse’s high profile players, Garbutt has two Super League titles to his name. A quality forward, he’ll be up against Mike Cooper who has been outstanding in recent years and will be tough to stop. Garbutt will need to give as good as he gets in this area if he wants to stop Warrington stealing a march down field.
Where the game will be won and lost:
As aforementioned, Warrington’s pack, especially the likes of Cooper, pose a major threat to Toulouse. The French side have serious flair but if they’re trapped in their own 20, then that flair won’t have much impact at all. So, they’ll need to get a roll on down field themselves if they want to give themselves a chance of victory.
Prediction: Toulouse Olympique 10-30 Warrington Wolves