Talking Points: What have I learned this week?

Dave Parkinson returns with his bitesize look at the rugby league world.

Warrington CAN defend

After keeping Leigh to just ten points last week, Warrington repeated the dose against Wigan with an excellent rearguard that frustrated the Warriors and forced errors. Their enthusiasm for the task was unsurpassed this year.

Peta Hiku is THE MAN

The Killers may have a new single out called “The Man” and I think this sums up the arrival of Peta Hiku (pictured) at Warrington.

His combination with Ben Pomeroy on the right has been great and Hiku amassed 175 metres at Wigan to go along with the 194 he made against Leigh. What a start to life in England!

Congratulations Sean O’Loughlin

What an achievement! Reaching 400 games for Wigan is a notable effort and O’Loughlin is certainly an inspiration to a generation of Warriors fans, players and youngsters.

Micky Higham reaches 500 games

Congratulations are due for Micky Higham as well. The Leigh hooker and skipper played his 500th professional game at Huddersfield.

Wakefield deserve respect

Wakefield are in the top four on merit. I saw them in action at Widnes on Friday and they were good. Mason Caton-Brown was potent and they largely bossed Widnes around after the first 20 minutes.

David Fifita was in some excellent form and I will have an interview for him on Love Rugby League next week.

I have been impressed by Wakefield whenever I have seen them this term and Chris Chester has built on their efforts last year to mould an even better side that gives Caton-Brown confidence.

Where’s the excitement Widnes?

The game on Friday night had all the atmosphere of a dead fish. I know that Widnes can be better and if their intention, heading into the Qualifiers is to fly under the radar, then it worked.

Ramp it up guys, your fans deserve more and there are exciting players like Chris Bridge and Cory Thompson. Get the ball in their hands more and see the stands respond.

Stanningley well placed for promotion push

Stanningley look set to mount a serious promotion challenge in National Conference League Three. This comes after a tough win at Rylands that even included some posturing in the car park by some afterwards. Despite their inability to cap emotions, it was a pretty solid game.

Stand-off Jack Sykes was the points ace with a hat-trick of tries and three goals with other touch-downs coming from Will Hickman and Adam Benn. Kamen Smith, Stuart Simm and Nick Braide scored tries for Rylands with Chris Forster kicking their only goal in a 14-26 away success for the Yorkshire side.

London youth policy producing

London Broncos were pretty slick with ball in hand at times during their 58-18 win at Rochdale Hornets.

They included Alex Walker, Michael Channing, Matt Davies and Lewis Bienek who all came through their youth ranks. With more to come I expect the Broncos to be buzzing for years to come. Walker in particular was excellent at fullback.

Props CAN play for 80 minutes

Well almost. Anthony Walker was Rochdale Hornets’ man-of-the-match and it was fully deserved. He took the game to London and played almost 77 minutes in one go. None of this twenty minute roll on and roll off for the former Wakefield and St Helens prop.

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