Watkins talks up importance of Leeds’ fixture with Wigan

They may have just come out of a tough Easter period unbeaten, but Leeds Rhinos captain Kallum Watkins knows there are even harder times ahead as his side prepare to face Wigan on Friday night.

Watkins, who committed his long-term future to the club yesterday, saw his side draw with Huddersfield on Good Friday, before beating Salford on Easter Monday. This was followed up with a narrow two-point victory over Wakefield last time out.

But with the season now approaching the half-way points, Watkins knows a win against Wigan will have a bearing on how the season starts to pan out.

“Easter was tough but we’ve come through pretty unscathed,” Watkins told totalrl.com

“We got a couple of decent results which gives us a bit of confidence going forward, but we still know there are things to do to get better.

“It’s often after Easter that the table starts to take shape a little bit and you get an idea of whereabouts you are and what you need to get to do to get to where you want to be.

“So now we’re coming towards the summer it’s an important time of the year for getting positions right ahead of the Super 8s.

“We just want to get as high up as we can but we can only do that by winning games and getting good results so with Wigan on Friday and then Hull FC we’ve got a tough couple of weeks ahead of us.”

Adam Cuthbertson, who has been absent since suffering a hand injury in the World Club Challenge match against Melbourne Storm, returns to the squad or this evening’s game, as do Joel Moon and Brett Delaney, who missed Sunday’s trip to Wakefield.

Leeds’ 19-man squad to face Wigan is: 1 Ashton Golding, 2 Tom Briscoe, 3 Kallum Watkins, 5 Ryan Hall, 6 Joel Moon, 7 Richie Myler, 8 Adam Cuthbertson, 9 Matt Parcell, 10 Brad Singleton, 11 Jamie Jones-Buchanan, 12 Carl Ablett, 13 Stevie Ward, 14 Brad Dwyer, 15 Brett Delaney, 16 Anthony Mullally, 22 Ash Handley, 27 Cameron Smith, 28 Mikolaj Oledzki, 30 Josh Walters