Match preview: Wigan Warriors v Salford Red Devils
Joel Tomkins could make his first Rugby League appearance since October 2011 tonight, as he gears up to make his second debut for Wigan Warriors. Tomkins’ last outing in a cherry and white shirt was against St Helens in October 2011, but he could feature as the Warriors take on Salford Red Devils.
It is a game that provides plenty of links between the two sides; not least former Wigan assistant Iestyn Harris, who is now in charge of Salford. Logan Tomkins should also feature against his parent club, whilst Dom Manfredi could feature for Wigan against the side he spent some time on loan with earlier this season.
The Red Devils hope full-back Kevin Locke will be fit after he aggravated a minor back injury in last week’s home defeat by Leeds. Former Wigan forward Gareth Hock serves the third game of a seven-match ban.
Wigan Warriors: Bateman, Bowen, Charnley, Clubb, Crosby, Dudson, Farrell, Flower, Gelling, Hughes, James, Manfredi, O’Loughlin, Powell, Sarginson, Smith, Taylor, Tomkins, Williams.
Salford Red Devils: Ashurst, Caton-Brown, Chase, Evalds, Fages, D Griffin, J Griffin, Hansen, Johnson, Lee, Locke, Morley, Puletua, Rapira, Sa’u, Tasi, Tomkins, J Walne, Walton.
Salford are seeking their first ever win at the DW Stadium in Thursday night’s game. The Reds’ last away win against the Warriors came 21-14 at Central Park on 17 August, 1997. Wigan have won their last 16 home meetings with Salford since then.
Salford’s last win against Wigan was 16-4, in Round Five of the Challenge Cup, at The Willows on 19 May, 2006. The Warriors have won their last 16 meetings with the Red Devils since then.
Wigan will be a wounded beast after their shock defeat to Bradford last time out. With Joel Tomkins back and likely to feature, the Warriors should be heavy favourites against a Salford side who are desperate for points. Home win.
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