THOMAS Leuluai has stoked the fire ahead of tomorrow’s big Super League opener by claiming St Helens are the team to beat this year.
The Wigan half-back won the man-of-the-match award in last year’s Grand Final as Warriors overcame the Saints 22-10 at Old Trafford.
But the Kiwi international believes the old enemy will be the big danger to Wigan’s hopes of winning back-to-back titles.
He told the Evening Post: “Teams to watch out for will be Warrington and Huddersfield, but I’m actually tipping St Helens (to be the biggest threat).
“They’ve lost a few players but they’ve got a few back, and the likes of Kyle Eastmond and Leon Pryce are quality players.
“They’ll have a lot of fire in their belly after what happened in the Grand Final and we’ll have to watch out for them.
“Since I’ve been here, the standard of Super League seems to get better and better – and that promises to be the case against this year.”
Wigan have been installed as favourites for Super League XVI ahead of the big kick-off, but Leuluai insists there will be no added pressure on the players.
“I suppose a lot of people will be going after us because we’re the champions, and judging by the trials it seems every team has stepped up from last year,” he admitted.
MORE ON THIS IN TODAY’S (FRIDAY) WIGAN EVENING POST ...