O’Brien expecting physical Catalan battle

Warrington halfback Gareth O’Brien is anticipating a typically robust welcome from Catalan Dragons this weekend in Perpignan.

The Wolves travel to the South of France having lost at home to Wakefield at the weekend, but O’Brien insists that Tony Smith’s team are now fully focused on the Dragons.

“We’re expecting a real physical battle,” he said.

“They’re a big team, and they seem to come alive when they’re on their own patch in the South of France.

“That’s something us boys have got to match. We’ve got to match the physicality, and overcome all the little things that come with it, like the travel, the crowd and the heat.

“We know what it’s about.

“The last few weeks have been quite disappointing as far as results go, and performance-wise.

“We thought we were out-enthused, which was the most disappointing thing. But we’ve had a lok at the video footgae, and we’ve licked and we’re foused on areas we need to improve.

“We’ll be ready for the game on Friday.”

O’Brien is slowly becoming an established first-team player at the Wolves, which is his hometown club.

“I’ve enjoyed it. I’m a homegrown lad, so this is the club I really want to be at and be a part of,” he said.

“I’ve enjoyed my game time and I’m fairly happy with how I’ve gone.

“I’m looking forward to kicking on now and hopefully cementing a spot coming into the business end of the year.

“I wouldn’t say I’ve really cemented my spot yet. We’ve got a team full of internationals  – Richie Myler, Stefan Ratchford – and Chris Bridge has played a lot of halfback this year as well, so there’s still a lot of competition for places.

“I’ve just got to play as solidly as I can and keep those boys on their toes. It’s good competition, it’s all healthy.”

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