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Time to Break the Noble Jinx
Posted by southstander on April 04 2008 - 12:30:43

Pixie Noble!

Out of four meetings last season, the Rhinos only won the one that mattered, the Grand Final Final Eliminator.

On the other three occasions we were humbled by Brian Nobles side who were otherwise capitulating to all around them. Wigan are sat third in Superleague XIII , behind Warrington on points difference and ourselves by a big four points.

Can Noble work another miracle against Leeds and escape back over the Pennines with two points?

We preview the game here...

The Rhinos are once again without stand-off talisman Dnny McGuire who picked up a knock after ten minutes against Saints last week and never returned to the pitch. Jamie Jones-Buchanan is also suffering after leaving the field on two minutes, although he did get back on the pitch, and will be absent, and missed.

Who would have guessed that by Round Ten of 2008 that we'd be relying on the likes of Scruton, Ablett, Tansey, Hall, Burgess, Kaye and Worrall? All seven are named in Blueys nineteen and five of those will definitely be playing. I've given up trying to second guess the coach, as he always springs a surprise.

Wigan are also without some of their household names as Hock (hand), Prescott (medial ligaments), and Pryce (foot) are all missing from Nobles side. There will be some interesting match-ups in the game. Richie Mathers returns to Headingley for the first time sin leaving at the end of 2006, and Mark Calderwood will once again either thrill or horrrify the SouthStanders. The game also sees Leuluai against Leuluai and Fielden against Peacock. All in all it is a mouthwatering prospect.

Three Wigan C's to watch;


Colbon

Carmont

Calderwood

Last season we won by an aggregate score of 74-66 despite losing three out of four matters. We lost by margins of two, four and sixteen and won in the Final Eliminator by thirty. The only match report from last season that you'll want to read was that final game, 36-6 at Headingley in October. In the other games we were all at sea!

Southstander.com Prediction
Rhinos 28 12 Wigan

We're down on players but after a very successful easter we're also flying high and the injuries don't seem to be making too much of a difference as the yougsters step into the breach. We've the best defence, by over 100 points, and the best attack, by over fifty points. Surely Wigan haven't got a chance.

The bookies are likely to give the visitors twelve to fourteen points start, and they may not be too far away. I'd hope that we can do them by more than that but it won't be many.

Please note that there is an Academy curtain raiser at 3.15 where we take on last years Minor Premiers, so it would be worth getting there early. It looks like a dry day but turning to rain towards early evening, the visitors could get wet on the Western Terrace.

Don't forget to get your predictions in here.

Here's to being six points clear of the Wiganers by eight o'clock on Saturday night.

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