Betts looking for stability

Widnes coach Denis Betts is hoping to name an unchanged line-up for the first time this season when they take on St Helens on Sunday.

The Vikings have gone through 32 players already in a difficult first season back in the top flight, but they have shown encouraging signs in the past six weeks, culminating in Monday’s 40-10 victory over Castleford.

They welcome St Helens to the Stobart Stadium at the weekend, having already been beaten twice by their neighbours so far this season – 40-38 at the same ground in the Challenge Cup, and a 62-0 thumping in the league reverse fixture at Langtree Park.

Betts told the club’s official website: “The one thing I would really like to do, is something that I have not had a chance to do all year and that is to pick the same side two weeks on the trot.

“That would be a real bonus and offer us the consistency and stability we have been striving for all season.”

The 17 that beat Castleford, recording a second successive home victory for the Vikings, included on-loan trio Stefan Marsh, Joe Mellor and Paul McShane, as well as new signing Eamon O’Carroll.

Betts added: “Saints are a very dangerous team.

“We’ve played them twice already this year and in the first game we found ourselves involved in a bit of a ‘you score – we score’ contest and ran them really close. Less than a week later we played them again at Langtree Park and got our backsides well and truly smacked.

“There was an outstanding atmosphere at the Stobart Stadium on Monday night and this gave the players a huge lift. More of the same this weekend would certainly be appreciated by everybody at the club.”

Widnes haven’t won an away game in Super League since a 34-14 victory over Leigh in June 2005, and are yet to record back-to-back victories in Super League this season.

Monday’s win over Castleford did lift them off the bottom of the table, with four wins, ahead of London Broncos.

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