Why Wigan Warriors WILL lose the Grand Final according to Brian Noble

As Wigan Warriors and Catalans Dragons prepare to collide in the Super League Grand Final, there are plenty of narratives.

The Dragons are striving to become only the fifth team to be crowned Champions and the first new side since 2004.

Meanwhile, Wigan are pursuing Super League title number six in Grand Final number 12.

But the biggest story is that of Sam Tomkins coming up against the club with which he made his name in his final game striving to end his career as a Super League Champion.

The man who gave him his Wigan debut in 2008 believes that this will give the Warriors the edge.

Brian Noble said on BBC Five Live: “It’s a wonderful ending for what a wonderful career he’s had, both in the NRL and over here and internationally.

“That’ll be the most of the pundits and the media’s angle on this game at the weekend, but if you look across both teams and pick up on what Kevin said about, I think these are the two best teams and it’s star-studded. There are star performers on both sides.

“Clearly Tomkins’ story is going to headline and be the focus but I think you’ve got two intelligent coaches as well going head to head and I just think when we go through the names for this final, there are game breakers right across the board for both teams. I think we’ve got the two most exciting teams as well in the grand final.”

He backed the Dragons to win the Super League title: “Well, I think there are nine players leaving Catalans so they’ve got plenty of reason to talk about, well, ‘we’re not going to be together again’.

“You have to compartmentalise the emotional side of it, you have to perform on the day and you want most of your players playing as near to their best football as you possibly can.

“The game is as much won by emotions as it is by tactics, but you have to stick to what you’ve been doing through the year and I slightly fancy Catalan probably for another reason.

“One of their mission statements would be that they want to be one of the teams outside, only four teams that have won this competition, to make a name for themselves, to put a blueprint on the fact that this is French Rugby League, this is what we stand for, this is what we’re about.

“They lost to Grand Final two years ago, they’ve got nine players leaving so there’s stories on both sides.

“Wigan have to perform and I think with the superstars that they have there, you look at Field, you look at French, you look at the way Miski and Marshall have been finishing plays, it could well end up as Smith-French axis against Pearce and May could be the deciding factor here.”