“They have got no chance! It is ours for the taking.” Yes, this is what the Australians will be thinking heading into the 2019 World Club Challenge.
Sydney controversially released an advertisement claiming they are “world champions” something that provoked a witty response from Wigan, claiming their ‘team talk’ is already done.
Okay, this was done as tongue in cheek with the Americans, we all have a sense of humour but be careful what you say nowadays as it just might come back to haunt you.
This gives Wigan the incentive to respond in such a manner and after all, they are no strangers to surprising the Australians on the big stage.
Memory lane, Wigan recorded the only English World Club triumph down under in 1994, defeating Wayne Bennett’s Brisbane 20-14.
Add to that their home and away double over the Canterbury Bulldogs in the 1997 Championship, then most recently their 2017 win over Cronulla.
Given the differences in time, it demonstrates that no matter how their squad looks, Wigan still have the professionalism to provide the NRL teams with an uphill struggle in such games.
This year’s clash could very well be similar; though Wigan started with a defeat at St Helens, they provided a stern challenge regardless and responded with a comprehensive win over previous world champions Leeds.
So their confidence will certainly have increased following the win, but it’s not all about form!
They possess an impressive squad of players, boasting international experience as well as promising youth coming through their ranks.
Captain Sean O’Loughlin will lead the way for his team, that and their impressive set of pivots in Thomas Leuluai, Sam Powell, George Williams and former Man of Steel Zak Hardaker.
These pivots of course have an exciting array of backs to work with, Tom Davies, Liam Marshall and Oliver Gildart scoring 49 tries between them alone last season clearly showing their fluency in scoring.
That and an exciting and unpredictable set of forwards, the Warriors certainly now how to turn the tide against anything thrown at them, though make no mistake, this will be their toughest challenge of the year.
The Roosters swept all side in the NRL last season, finishing as Minor Premiers before taking out Cronulla, South Sydney and Melbourne on their way to their 14th title.
Though the NRL was very closely contested, credit to Sydney for ‘having the most bottle’ in them to defeat all else.
And let’s not forget their history of dispatching Super League clubs, on either side of the world.
Having trounced St Helens on multiple occasions, and even beaten Wigan five years ago, Sydney will enter the game as the red hot favourites!
That and actually having never lost to English opposition on such an occasion, Sydney could not pose a much bigger threat.
Possessing the likes of half-back Cooper Cronk, joint skippers Boyd Cordner and Jake Friend, then juggernauts Mitch Aubusson and Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Sydney have danger in every department, so Wigan do have their work cut out.
But just as England did last season against our counterparts, the Warriors are capable of defying the odds.
They have achieve this plenty of times before and given all of the international experience boasted between both teams, this is sure to be a cracker so make sure you do no miss!
The 2019 Dacia World Club Challenge takes place at the DW stadium, with live coverage beginning at 6:30pm on Sky Sports tonight!