Wigan Warriors: Sam Powell opens up on the 'honest' talks after the Leeds Rhinos defeat and discusses his history with the Challenge Cup

Sam Powell says the Wigan Warriors squad are determined to put things right following last week’s defeat to Leeds.

Matty Peet’s side take on the Rhinos again on Saturday afternoon, as they travel to Headingley in the sixth round of the Challenge Cup (K.O. 2.30pm).

Powell states the Warriors are working hard to avoid a repeat of the Super League meeting, where they conceded 34 second half points against 12-men.

“It was a disappointing result,” he said.

Sam PowellSam Powell
Sam Powell
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“Myself and a few of the other leaders felt like we let the team down a little bit.

“It’s part of being a professional, you’ve got to be honest and we’ve got to learn- and do it quickly.

“The things we did early on in the game, we didn’t do in the second half, which gave Leeds a leg-up.

“I thought they did well with 12 men, but it was very disappointing for us but it’s something we’re going to try to put right.

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“It’s part of sport and part of the journey. There are ups and downs in seasons, so there’s no point sulking. We have to get in and work hard to put our best foot forward on Saturday.

“The fact it’s the Challenge Cup is a big factor in why we need to win.

“Leeds at Headingley is always a big game, they’re a massive club with a great history, so it’s going to be a good challenge for us.

“The atmosphere is going to be great, so I’ll try to enjoy it.

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“It’s been a strange one after playing them last week, but game plan-wise not much changes- it’s about putting a few things right.

“As a team we want to be successful and win this competition again.

“We’ve worked really hard on our culture and want it to be a good place here, so trophies are the end product of that.

“We’ve got a big challenge ahead of us but hopefully we’ll end up there again.”

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From a personal perspective, Powell is still waiting to win his first Challenge Cup.

The hooker was part of the team that lost to Hull FC in the 2017 final, and was unable to play in the 2022 triumph at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

“As a club we’ve got a good history with the cup, last year was a great achievement,” he added.

“This is our first crack at winning something this season so we’ll give it our best shot.

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“It’s something I’ve never won so I’m desperate to get back there and lift it.

“I’ve been to Wembley and lost there, so that wasn’t great.

“It was good to be around the lads last year, but it was devastating not to play in the game.

“The whole week felt different- having it at Tottenham was amazing.

“I knew a good few weeks before that I wouldn’t be involved.

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“You’ve got to be professional; you can’t come in sulking, so I was trying to be as positive as I could be.

“It is tough looking back, so it feeds your hunger to get back there. It’s one I want to get.”