Jukes: We've stressed to players how important this is
Neil Jukes says his players have been left in no doubt about what it means for Leigh to be taking on Wigan in Super League for the first time in a competitive fixture at the LSV.
The Centurions coach says he has been stressing how important the game is to the team and the town and he hopes fans from both sides of the borough will turn out in numbers tomorrow night.
“It’s a big one, there’s no escaping that,” said Jukes.
“It was a great occasion at the DW Stadium earlier this season and this will be the same, especially in front of the Sky Sports cameras.
“Our coaches have been stressing to the players who are not from the area that this is a very important game, not just for the team but for the town as a whole.
“We have waited a long time to get games like this at the Sports Village.
“We have players like Harrison Hansen and Ryan Hampshire who played for Wigan so they will obviously want to impress their old club.
“We have played Wigan several times at the LSV but the games have had no real importance. Wigan are a tough, tough team and I know Shaun Wane will have been working hard after some defeats recently. You have to admire the way he has continued to bring through young players because like us, they’ve been badly affected by injuries this season.
“I’m not too interested in their run or how many games they’ve lost because whoever plays against us will be committed to working tirelessly.”
Jukes says he will delay naming his squad as long as possible because so many players are carrying injuries while others have been suffering from bugs.
“Suspensions and long term injuries aside, I can’t be 100 per cent on the squad at this stage,” he said.
Leigh dropped to the bottom of Super League after the last round of fixtures but Jukes won’t ruke out a top eight finish until it’s “mathematically impossible.”
Wigan are on a worse run than Leigh, having not won for six Super League games. In their last outing they were beaten 39-26 by Hull FC – the last team that Centurions got the better of a fortnight ago.
Leigh haven’t beaten Wigan in a competitive fixture since 1984 and lost 20-0 when the sides met at the DW Stadium earlier this season.