Sky Sports pundit picks five unsung heroes from Wigan Warriors & Catalans Dragons – ‘He’s a rising star’

Ross Heppenstall
Brad O'Neill Wigan Warriors and Jon Wilkin Alamy

Brad O'Neill (right) in action for Wigan Warriors - Alamy

Sky Sports pundit Jon Wilkin has been busy preparing for tomorrow’s Grand Final and has his fingers in a few pies, almost literally, with punditry just one of his regular gigs.

The former St Helens title winner also runs a coffee shop and a bakery – and Saturday’s title decider has seen him rushed off his feet.

“My bakery has a contract with Manchester United and I’ve got two vans delivering 220 loaves to Old Trafford on Grand Final day, so this is a good week for me!” Wilkin told Love Rugby League.

“As for the Grand Final itself, there are loads of great stories surrounding the game.

“Take Matt Peet’s development as a coach, Sam Tomkins’ last-ever game, plus Steve McNamara and the Catalans story in general with how far they have come.”

Here, Wilkin gives his most intriguing sub-plot surrounding the fixture, assessing the most influential performers for both teams this season and gives his prediction for the title decider.

Jon Wilkin’s five unsung heroes heading into Super League’s title decider

Toby King

Toby King Wigan Warriors Alamy

This guy has had a belting year at Wigan despite being a loan player who remains contracted to Warrington Wolves and will return there next season.

Him and Jake Wardle in the centres have done some amazing things for Wigan.

King can finish and is a big lad who is strong under the high ball.

Brad O’Neill

Brad O'Neill Wigan Warrors Alamy

Brad has got the makings of a great player – but he has to go up against Micky McIlorum this weekend.

Micky has menace in his eyes and, when they are lining up in the tunnel before kick-off, Micky Mac is going to look straight through his rival hooker.

But O’Neill is a rising star and has definitely been an unsung hero this year – his influence on this Wigan team has steadily grown.

Tom Davies

Tom Davies Catalans Dragons Alamy

The ex-Wigan winger has been somewhat eclipsed by his team-mate Tom Johnstone this season.

But do not underestimate how effectively Davies has contributed to the Catalans cause once again with his carries and his finishing power.

He has also weighed in with 15 tries in 23 Super League appearances. Do not overlook that either.

Ben Garcia

Ben Garcia Catalans Dragons Alamy

It’s hard to call him an unsung hero because he’s a hero isn’t it? The Dragons captain is simply exceptional.

He certainly has to be regarded as one of the best French players in Super League history because of the quality and consistency that he brings.

A lot of Garcia’s team-mates in the pack could also be labelled as unsung heroes, the likes of Mike McMeeken and Julian Bousquet.

Matt Whitley

Matt Whitley Catalans Dragons Alamy

Whitley’s work-rate is outstanding and he is a key cog in this Catalans side.

He’s a natural back-rower and is a player who has really thrived under Steve McNamara.

Whitley will be desperate to finish his time at Catalans with a Grand Final winners’ ring.

Watch the Betfred Super League Grand Final exclusively live on Sky Sports Main Event and NOW from 5pm Saturday October 14th, and Betfred Super League Wheelchair Final on Sky Sports Arena and NOW from 5pm Sunday October 15th.

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