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Recent Articles by Hightown

Warriors and Saints preview

SCRUM-HALF Michael Dobson makes his first appearance for Wigan in Saturday?s derby with St Helens.The Warriors, desperately in need of a win to kick-start their battle against relegation, moved quickly to snap up Dobson after Stacey Jones? recovery from a broken arm signalled the end of his loan spell with Catalans Dragons.Dobson made a big impression with the Dragons, scoring 79 points in his 12 matches, but he will not have experienced the hot-house atmosphere of a Wigan-Saints derby, which is expected to draw a 20,000-plus crowd to the JJB Stadium.He is still a teenager for 48 hours and coach Brian Noble is keen not to put the Canberra reserve under pressure, despite his side?s perilous position at the foot of the table.?He?s come here to enjoy his football so let?s allow him to do that,? he said. ?Placing unrealistic expectations on him would be unfair.?Dobson, fresh from a man-of-the-match display in the Dragons? 34-16 Challenge Cup win at Widnes, takes over from Dennis Moran.Wigan Warriors v St Helens, JJB Stadium, Saturday May 27 2006Wigan 18-man: Ashton, Brown, Dallas, Dobson, Fletcher, Goulding, Higham, Hill, Hock, Logan, McAvoy, O?Loughlin, Orr, Paleaaesina, Richards, Seu Seu, Tickle, Vaealiki.St Helens 18-man: Wellens, Gardner, Lyon, Talau, Meli, Pryce, Long, Fozzard, Cunningham, Cayless, Gilmour, Wilkin, Sculthorpe, Hooper, P. Anderson, V. Anderson, Smith, Fa?asavalu.Referee: A KleinCourtesy http://www.superleague.co.uk/

Catalans and Wakefield preview

KIWI Test legend Stacey Jones will make his eagerly-awaited comeback for the Catalans, after being given the all-clear to face Wakefield in Perpignan on Saturday.The 30-year-old has not played since breaking his arm in the opening minutes of the Dragons? second match of the season at Salford on February 17 but X-rays showed the break has fully healed.Jones whetted the appetite of the Dragons fans with a man-of-the-match performance in the 38-30 win against Wigan on the opening weekend of Super League XI and coach Mick Potter, who arrived at the club a month into the season, cannot wait to watch his little general in action.?His calmness and experience will help us out, just his ability to push and pull the players around,? said Potter.?I haven?t seen him play, apart from on a video of the Wigan game, and I?m certainly looking forward to working with him on the field.?He seems to have a lot of things covered that we?re trying to do. The players have responded to him at training and hopefully his return will boost the crowd a bit.?Wakefield are still without goalkicking stand-off Jamie Rooney, who on Friday signed a new three-year contract, but welcome back French forward Olivier Elima to face his fellow countrymen after a five-match absence.?They?ve got some big and skilful forwards and good strike players like Demetriou and Solomona,? said Potter. ?It makes for an interesting game.? Catalans Dragons v Wakefield, Perpignan Saturday May 26Catalans Dragons 18-man: Berthezene, Casty, Chan, Fakir, Fellous, Frayssinous, Guigue, Guisset, Hindmarsh, Hughes, Jampy, Jones, Mounis, Murphy, Rinaldi, Rudder, Verges, Wilson.Wakefield 18-man: Halpenny, Demetriou, Whittle, Jeffries, Obst, Griffin, Korkidas, Solomona, Betham, White, Wrench, MacGillivray, Elima, Applegarth, Catic, Saxton, Atkins, Watene.Ref: K KirkpatrickCourtesy http://www.superleague.co.uk/

Bradford aiming for Rhinos win

BRADFORD aiming for Rhinos win Bradford have the chance to leapfrog arch-rivals Leeds into second place by completing an engage Super League double over the Rhinos at Odsal on Friday.The Bulls were three points behind the Rhinos until claiming a 20-18 victory at Headingley six weeks ago and can now stake a claim to be the biggest challengers to leaders St Helens, who visit Wigan on Saturday.Leeds have lost three of their last six league matches, all in the absence of their inspirational skipper Kevin Sinfield, but believe they got back in the groove with last week?s 66-0 Challenge Cup win over Rochdale.?We?ve been though a tough patch but we got the right sort of performance at the weekend and hopefully we can build on that,? said Sinfield, who made his comeback from ankle and knee injuries in the cup tie.Bradford, too, hope they are over the worst after losing three of their last five matches, including a poor performance in last Saturday?s cup tie at St Helens, since Steve McNamara took over as head coach from Brian Noble.?We had a tough couple of days after the defeat at Saints,? admitted McNamara. ?We have tried to address the problems that cropped up at Saints.?Any time you under-perform, you want to try and put it right in the next game.?Bradford Bulls v Leeds Rhinos, Odsal, Friday May 26 2006Bradford 18-man: Hape, Deacon, Vagana, Fielden, I. Harris, Johnson, Newton, Lynch, Meyers, Gene, James, Ferres, Vainikolo, Henderson, Langley, B. Harris, St Hilaire, Withers.Leeds 18-man: Donald, Walker, Senior, Smith, McGuire, Burrow, Bailey, Diskin, Peacock, Lauitiiti, Ellis, Sinfield, Millard, Poching, Jones-Buchanan, Feather, Scruton, Williams.Referee: S GansonCourtesy http://www.superleague.co.uk/

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