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2 days ago
The Powergen Challenge Cup fourth round has thrown up an unexpected but potentially enthralling clash between Super League's bottom two sides.
Few could have expected Wigan to be bottom of the table seven weeks into the season and as a result their trip to Wakefield has taken on extra significance.
Coach Ian Millward was actually tipped to lead a strong Wigan charge this year and so their form has taken observers by surprise.
They will hope to get their revival under way at Belle Vue but it will be no easy task as, if any side needed a win as much as the Warriors at the moment, it is Wakefield.
Like their cup visitors, the Wildcats have tasted victory just once this season and are anxious to get their season up and running.
Wigan have all the cup history on their side having won the competition a record 17 times and reached the final on 27 occasions in total.
The Warriors also triumphed the last time the sides met in the cup, winning their quarter-final 20-4 two years ago.
They will not want to be reminded, however, that Wakefield won both home and away in the clubs' two meetings last season.
Despite defeats, the Wildcats have actually performed well in front of their own fans on their last two outings, being edged out 28-20 by Hull and 22-21 by Warrington.
Wigan's last two games, losses to Castleford and Bradford, have both been away and they must raise themselves to cross the Pennines for a third week in succession.
Millward has a good record in the Challenge Cup having overseen St Helens' victories in 2001 and 2004 while opposite number Tony Smith had a four-year stint a player at Wigan in the late 1990s.