Match Preview – Catalans vs Wigan

Catalans face another tough test against unbeaten Wigan on Saturday

We watch what is being said as the top Catalan Dragons welcome the Super League’s only undefeated team to Wigan Warriors on Saturday…

McNamara’s hiring plans bear fruit

The Catalans enter Saturday’s game after their best Super League start to the season with six wins in seven games, including becoming the first team to defeat St Helens in 2021 last weekend.

The victory put the Dragons in the top and they face another test of their credentials when they face the only team still unbeaten in the Super League this year in the form of leaders Wigan Warriors.

Match Preview - Catalans vs WiganMatch Preview - Catalans vs Wigan

Catalan Dragons vs Wigan Warriors

May 29, 2021, 4:55 p.m.

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It’s another sign of the progress the team has made under Steve McNamara, with off-season rookies like Gil Dudson, Mike McMeeken and Dean Whare all making great contributions with young French people starting to go through the system.

Speaking on the latest episode of The training manual, the man who guided the Catalans to their first major trophy when they won the Challenge Cup in 2018 explained that anyone who wanted to move to the south of France didn’t come here just to relax.

“It might have been a reality in the past, but one of the things I did when I got here… I promised our recruiting would be based on making sure people want come to the Catalans to win games and be the best you can be, ”said McNamara Air sports.

“The other side of that is if you train well, train well, and do well, that’s all a good side. It’s not who we are and what we are. we do now.

“It took a while and I’m aware that it hasn’t changed the perception of some people, but attracting players here now is: do you want to be one of the first players to win a competition for Catalan Dragons?

“We’re 15, we’ve won one trophy, we’re trying to strive to win the next one, so if you want to be here you have to be here for the right reasons.”

England full-backs clash

A hamstring injury that is set to rule out Bevan French for several months means Zak Hardaker is set to return to full-back when Wigan travels to Perpignan for the Super League clash on Saturday night.

The 29-year-old started the season in the post where he made a name for himself when the Frenchman was unavailable, putting in a series of impressive performances, and could well find himself up against another former Wigan No.1 by Sam Tomkins.

Zak Hardaker will return to Wigan-back against the Catalans

Zak Hardaker to return to Wigan full-back against Catalans

Although he retired late from last week’s 20-16 victory over St Helens after suffering a warm-up injury, Tomkins is set to return for Dragons and Warriors head coach Adrian Lam, s’ awaits a fascinating competition between two of the competing players. for a place in Shaun Wane’s England squad.

“We got ready for Sam to play,” Lam said. “Zak wanted to come back to the fullback from the Hull game, I guess to correct what was wrong there, so I’m sure he will play well for us this weekend.

“He wasn’t happy with his last performance. He’s having a hard time getting started.”

Wigan enters the game following a narrow 17-16 win over the Salford Red Devils last weekend and will face several players who know the club well, including Dudson, Tomkins and his brother Joel, Micky McIlorum and Tom Davies.

Match Preview - Catalans vs Wigan

Match Preview - Catalans vs Wigan 1:53
Jackson Hastings scored a late goal as Wigan beat Salford in the Betfred Super League on Saturday.

Jackson Hastings scored a late goal as Wigan beat Salford in the Betfred Super League on Saturday.

Lam is no doubt that the fact that there are several former Wigan players on the Dragons squad presents additional danger to his squad, but hopes the Warriors can channel the spirit of the September 28-12 victory. last at Gilbert Brutus stadium.

“They have signed very well in the preseason and they also have a lot of former Wigan players who know how we play probably more than anyone,” Lam said.

“It was a very difficult time for us to go there last year and winning was a special time that turned the season around for us. We see it as another opportunity for that.”

Team news

In addition to Tomkins’ availability, last week’s other late withdrawal, Sam Kasiano, is also back for the Catalans. However, McNamara called youngsters Corentin Le Cam and Cesar Rouge in the absence of injured duo Fouad Yaha and Alrix Da Costa.

Match Preview - Catalans vs Wigan

Match Preview - Catalans vs Wigan 3:56
Highlights as the Catalans Dragons became the first team to defeat St Helens in the Betfred Super League in 2021.

Highlights as the Catalans Dragons became the first team to defeat St Helens in the Betfred Super League in 2021.

Wigan Lam boss welcomes back captain Thomas Leuluai after a five-game absence with a sternum injury. Center or second rower Willis Isa is also expected to return after missing out on the win over Salford.

Named squads

Catalan Dragons: Arthur Mourgue, Tom Davies, Samisoni Langi, Dean Whare, James Maloney, Josh Drinkwater, Gil Dudson, Micky McIlorum, Julian Bousquet, Mike McMeeken, Benjamin Garcia, Benjamin Jullien, Mickael Goudemand, Matthieu Laguerre, Corentin Le Cam, Joel Tomkins, Joe Chan, Sam Kasiano, Jordan Dezaria, Ceser Rouge.

Warriors of Wigan: Dom Manfredi, Zak Hardaker, Tommy Leuluai, Brad Singleton, Sam Powell, Joe Bullock, Willie Isa, Liam Farrell, John Bateman, Oliver Partington, Morgan Smithies, Liam Byrne, Harry Smith, Ethan Havard, Jake Bibby, Mitch Clark, Joe Shorrocks , Kai Pearce-Paul, Sam Halsall, Umyla Hanley, Jackson Hastings.

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