Greenwood cautious of Saints

Greenwood cautious of Saints

  • Joe Greenwood looks ahead to Wigan’s Super League opener against local rivals St Helens.

  • Ex-Saints forward can’t wait for kick-off (7:45pm) to arrive at the Totally Wicked Stadium on Thursday night.

  • Greenwood: “You want to get one over your rivals and we’ve been preparing well to do that.

Former St Helens prop Joe Greenwood says Wigan Warriors are wary of the threat their local rivals will pose in Super League’s Thursday night opener.

The Warriors start their 2019 Super League trophy defence against St Helens at the Totally Wicked Stadium with Adrian Lam in charge for his first competitive game.

And Greenwood acknowledged where the key battles will lie in the derby blockbuster.

He said: “It’s a massive game. People want to watch these big games at the start of the year. It’s cold, wet, damp and miserable, but both teams will go at it through the middle and it will be a forward pack battle.

“They’ve (St Helens) recruited quite well. Ben Barba has gone, and they’ve now got Lachlan Coote. We’ve been doing our homework on them and we’ve put that into training, but now it’s about taking it onto the field.

“They would have tweaked little bits from last year like we have. Lammy (Lam) has been great and we’ve changed some things in attack and defence. It’s going to be a firework show!”

Lam talks to his squad in training.

The home side will welcome back Alex Walmsley who has been out with a neck injury since last March, but Greenwood emphasised the threat that Wigan will bring with new signing Joe Bullock possibly set to make his debut in Cherry and White.

Greenwood stated: “He’s (Walmsley) a big human and a lot to handle. He’s going to be hoping to get his team forward, but we have to stop that and weather that storm. We’re looking forward to the challenge ahead.

“Joe (Bullock) is a powerhouse and he’s going to be hard to stop when he’s got the ball. I’d like to see him put on the shirt and take the team forward through the middle. He’s played really well in the two warm-up games too.”

Greenwood, 25, is no stranger to a Wigan – Saints derby, after featuring on both sides of the field, with the latest coming for the Warriors in the 30-10 victory at the Totally Wicked Stadium last September.

And the second row has urged Wigan fans to be loud and proud, as he believes the 18th man make a big impact in his team’s success.

“The coaches don’t need to say much in training, as everyone knows it’s a big game. You want to get one over your rivals and we’ve been preparing well to do that.

“It’s been a long pre-season, but everyone has been on board. Everyone has been challenging each other and there’s a lot of competition in every position within the team. We are all pushing each other and it’s what you need in training, as it gets the best out of everyone.

“We had a good win (against them) last year and we’re looking to build on that. It will be a full house. Our fans come and watch us week in week out and they get behind us. It’s what you need as a team and individually as players, as it ‘eggs’ us on and hopefully we can come out on the other side as worthy winners.”

Wigan are set to take over 4,000 fans to the Totally Wicked Stadium on Thursday night.

Not got your ticket? Fans can pay on the gate at the Totally Wicked Stadium.

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