Preview: St Helens v Leeds (Fri)

Champions Leeds visit the favourites to take their crown this season, St Helens, on Friday night.

The Rhinos bounced back from their loss at Widnes by turning over Hull last weekend, and travel to a Saints side who have won five out of five in Super League so far in 2018.

Jon Wilkin returns from concussion for St Helens in place of Alex Walmsley, ruled out with a neck injury suffered in the win at Warrington last week.

Leeds have also lost a front-rower – prop Mitch Garbutt sidelined with a knee injury, which means Cameron Smith comes in to the 19-man squad.

Milestones:

TOM BRISCOE needs one appearance to reach 100 for Leeds. Briscoe scored a hat-trick of tries on his Rhinos debut – a 34-6 win at Hull KR on 16 February, 2014.

TOMMY MAKINSON needs two tries to reach a century of touchdowns for St Helens. Makinson has scored 98 tries in 172 games for the Saints since 2011.

JAMES ROBY needs one try to reach a century of touchdowns for St Helens. Roby has scored 99 tries in 404 games for the Saints since 2004.

Last ten meetings:

Leeds 16, St Helens 14 (SLS8-R3, 18/8/17)
Leeds 24, St Helens 22 (SLR20, 29/6/17)
St Helens 6, Leeds 4 (SLR1, 9/2/17)
St Helens 38, Leeds 34 (SLR12, 22/4/16)
Leeds 30, St Helens 18 (SLR6, 18/3/16)
Leeds 20, St Helens 13 (SLSF, 2/10/15)
Leeds 18, St Helens 32 (SLS8-R4, 4/9/15)
Leeds 24, St Helens 14 (CCSF, 31/7/15) (at Halliwell Jones Stadium, Warrington)
Leeds 46, St Helens 18 (SLR20, 3/7/15)
St Helens 16, Leeds 41 (SLR11, 17/4/15)

Super League summary

St Helens won 33 (includes wins in 1999, 2001, 2007 and 2008 play-offs)
Leeds won 31 (includes wins in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2011 Grand Finals; 1998, 2005, 2013 and 2015 play-offs)
St Helens highest score: 62-18 (H, 1999) (Widest margin: 56-10, H, 2004)
Leeds highest score: 74-16 (H, 2001) (Widest margin: 70-0, H, 2004)

St Helens 19-man squad: Lomax, Makinson, Morgan, Percival, Swift, Fages, Smith, Roby, Amor, Taia, Wilkin, McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Douglas, Thompson, Peyroux, Richardson, Grace, Lees, Barba.

Leeds 19-man squad: Golding, Briscoe, Watkins, Hall, Moon, Myler, Parcell, Singleton, Jones-Buchanan, Ablett, Dwyer, Delaney, Mullally, Handley, Ormondroyd, Walker, Smith, Oledzki, Walters.

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