Key Battles - St Helens

Key Battles - St Helens widnesvikings.co.uk
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16th May 2018

Widnes Vikings take on St Helens in the Betfred Super League at the 2018 Dacia Magic Weekend, kick-off 3:00pm. 

To whet the appetite ahead of the clash, we have taken a look at some potential clashes that could occur at St James' Park on Saturday afternoon...

 

Rhys Hanbury vs Ben Barba

The Vikings clash against St Helens at the Dacia Magic Weekend will be a huge test for Rhys Hanbury, who looks set to come up against one of the best talents in Super League.

The 32-year old has made 15 appearances for Widnes this year and has been a rock at the back on a regular basis for Denis Betts’ team, but Saturday’s clash may be see the Australian face his toughest challenge this season.

Barba’s combined 32 tries and assists this year is 12 more than any other player in Super League, so it is no surprise to see the 28-year old NRL winner helping his side to the Super League summit.

Hanbury has many more years’ experience than his opposite number in Super League and will be hoping that he can use every one of those valuable minutes to out-wit Barba on the field and take the two points home from the north-east.

 

Matt Whitley vs Jon Wilkin

The most intriguing matchup between the Vikings and Saints could well be played out by Matt Whitley and Jon Wilkin; a real example of youthful exuberance versus guile and experience.

Whitley produced a stand-out display in the Vikings’ narrow home defeat by Leeds last weekend and will be hoping to kick on for the club now that his long-term future with the club has been confirmed.

Against Wilkin, a stalwart of Saints since his arrival at the club in 2002, Widnes’ number 12 will need to work out how to outmanoeuvre his opposing second-rower; something easier said than done against someone with over 400 games to his name in the ‘Red V’ of the Saints.

 

Wellington Albert vs Luke Thompson 

Wellington has been in fine form for the Vikings in recent weeks and has quickly won over the love of those sat in the Halton Stadium terraces.

The Papua New Guinea star loves to use his strength to take the line on and certainly loves to try and get an offload away. He will no-doubt relish coming up against Luke Thompson, the man with the most carries in Super League this season.

Both men provide go-forward for their teams and embellish the spirit and passion instilled in them by their respective coaches. Wellington may not have played as many top-flight games as Luke Thompson, but he is very quickly making a name for himself as one of the fiercest runners in the competition.  

 

Tickets for our trip to the North East on Saturday are available to purchase. Get yours now and back the boys! 

Key Battles - St Helens widnesvikings.co.uk