Wane: Nothing compares to Wigan-Saints


Shaun Wane says nothing compares to a Wigan and St Helens derby, and that the form book goes out of the window.

Both sides have their fair share of injuries ahead of the game at the DW Stadium on Friday, with Saints missing several players in key positions, including James Roby, Jonny Lomax and Lance Hohaia.

The Easter weekend brings a full round of Super League “derbies” and Wane believes this derby is extra special.

He said: “They are a little bit different. I’ve played in a Leeds and Bradford one and there’s nothing compares to a Wigan and Saints game. 

I think that goes because Saints are a massive club that put a big emphasis on youth development and I have a lot of respect for St Helens, for what Eam and Mike Rush have done with the youth. They operate very similar to what we do, driving the youth through the system. 

“People understand the culture and obviously they are a great team in their own right, so I think that makes the game that bit extra special.”

Despite being on the end of some criticism for a slow start to the season, Saints have the same number of points as the Warriors going in to the game.

Wane added: “To be honest I think form goes out the window. We’ve been a little bit patchy in our form as well but I think when it comes to Friday regardless of form and regardless of the results last year, it’s just a one off game. 

“It means that much to the players and I have watched a lot of players that have come through the system with Wigan and St Helens. The likes of Paul Wellens and Jon Wilkin, I know Jon isn’t from St Helens but he has been there a long time. 

“They understand what it means to the fans and the club to win these games, there will be a lot of desire shown by both of them to win.”

Wane had identified Jonny Lomax as Saints’ main threat earlier in the week, but the in-form half-back turned full-back has been ruled out through injury.

A former Wiganer, hooker Stuart Howarth, has been drafted in to the Saints squad after signing on-loan from Salford City Reds, with Saints youngster Lee Gaskell moving in the other direction.


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