Usually a battle between the top and bottom sides in the league is a bit of a throw away game, but not in Super League.
After all, Toulouse picked up their first win ever in Super League at the expense of the Champions inflicting Saints’ inaugural defeat of the campaign. So, headed back to France, the Champions have something to prove.
Can they deliver against a Toulouse side who have improved in recent weeks with some exciting editions.
Toulouse have a former Saint back in the fold in the shape of the experienced Dominique Peyroux. Meanwhile, new signings Corey Norman and Daniel Alvaro are available but the game arrives too soon for Nathan Peats following his arrival after spells with Leigh and Huddersfield last season. The likes of Joe Bretherton are still absent through injury.
The Champions have Will Hopoate, Regan Grace and Jon Bennison back in the fold giving their squad extra quality. A Timely boost given Mark Percival’s absence. Agnatius Paasi is named after signing a new deal.
Match Preview – Key Battles:
Olly Ashall-Bott vs Jack Welsby: Since switching to Toulouse, Olly Ashall-Bott has shone and even caused the Champions plenty of problems earlier this season. A livewire, Saints will have to such him down. But they have their own massive weapon at fullback in the shape of Jack Welsby who can create attacking opportunities of every form.
Corey Norman vs Jonny Lomax: What a test for one of Super League’s newest arrival, Corey Norman as he takes on the competition’s leading halfback over the last few years in Jonny Lomax. Lomax will look to boss things here against the exciting Norman.
Where the game will be won and lost:
Ahead of this clash, Kristian Woolf praised the speed at which Toulouse played against the Saints earlier this season. The French side play at pace and look to play off the cuff and it is this which makes them a massive threat to the Champions who will hope to stamp out the attacking quality posed by their opponents. They’ll look to physically dominate and dictate the pace of the game.
Score Prediction: Toulouse Olympique 18-32 St Helens