It could be an epic: Royce predicts a classic

Royce Simmons
Royce Simmons

ROYLE Simmons is predicting a right royal tear up when Saints face arch-rivals Wigan on Friday.

The tough-talking Aussie believes the two sides are evenly matched and will produce an epic encounter.

“Quite simply, you have two of the best sides in the world playing each other and we are closely matched,” Simmons told Saints official website.

“You see that with the great rivalries over the years. Teams battle though the 70s, 80s and 90s and hook into each other. It usually goes down to the last ten minutes and we know it is likely to happen again.

“Our first game finished 16-16 and there were shots from the sidelines and drop goal attempts. The second one they scored with 30 seconds to go. It shows how intensive the games are and how important it is for us to play for the full 80 minutes.

“We lost our way for 10 minutes in that match after losing Paul Wellens and Gary Wheeler and they scored, then we settled again, got in front and they pipped us at the end. In games like this every tackle you make is a potential try saver. Sometimes you can get away with missing a tackle but you can’t in these big matches.”

St Helens expect Francis Meli to be back in action after missing the Bradford game with a dead leg. However, prop Josh Perry remains a doubt with a hamstring problem.

Scott Moore will not feature after his drink-drive arrest but Shaun Magennis and Matty Ashurst will come back into the reckoning.

“Paul Clough is continuing his rehab too and is taking part in contact sessions,” Simmons added.

“Leon Pryce is now running curves which is a good sign too. We’ve had a minor setback with Gary Wheeler which might put him back a week or two but James Roby came through the match at Odsal okay.

“He was courageous in that match. The numbness was still there but it’s important he won’t be going into that first tackle in the Wigan game worrying about the injury.”