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Challenge Cup Preview - Australian Rugby league News
globalrugbyleague - Sat, 25 Aug 2007 22:09:00 GMT
A win for St Helens in Saturday’s English Challenge Cup final would be nothing short of sweet revenge for the reigning champions.

Chances are Daniel Anderson’s men will do that when both teams run out onto Wembley Stadium. Skybet has the Dragons at 6-1 odds to score.

Still a victory for Mick Potter’s men is not viewed as a mission impossible by all of the experts.

The last time these two teams met in round 23 of Super League the Dragons shocked the Rugby League world with a 21-0 upset win over Saints.

No other team has held St Helen’s scoreless in 2007.

Even so there is also a widely held fear that the reigning titleholders could inflict the biggest winning margin in the history of the tournament.

That record currently belongs to Leeds who thrashed London by 36-points at the Old Wembley in 1999. In April St Helens scored a 43-point victory over the Dragons.

This clash is historic for Rugby League in that Les Catalans represent the first French team to make the Challenge Cup Final.

Their opponents on the other hand have winning experience on their side having taken out 5 of the last 11 cup finals.

For Australian viewers following the Roosters v Panthers clash, a replay of each Challenge Cup Semi final (Braford v St Helens and Wigan v Catalans) will be broadcast before the main game starts.

Saints will go looking for their 10th title in front of the 90,000 plus expected to be on hand while their opponents can take credit for reaching the final in record time for a relatively new team.

These are the forecast teams to take the field.

Unprecedented global coverage will ensure this game is beamed live or on delay across the globe to nations including France, Spain, Australia, New Zealand, the United States and even the middle east.

Sentanta Sports will broadcast the Challenge Cup final on delay at 2:30pm on August 25th throughout the United States.

French channel Sport + (part of the Canal + network , who regularly show Catalans' engage Super League fixtures) are also televising the game live.

TV industry experts estimate that the live or delayed coverage of the match will reach over 11 million households globally


Most finals and wins
17 wins in 28 finals by Wigan
Wembley: 15 wins in 22 finals by Wigan

Highest score
Leeds Rhinos 52 v. London Broncos 16 at Wembley in 1999
(Also widest margin)

Most tries by one team
9 by Huddersfield 37 v St. Helens 3 at Oldham in 1915
Leeds Rhinos 52 v London Broncos 16 at Wembley in 1999

Most Points by losing team
Bradford Bulls 32 v. St. Helens 40 at Wembley in 1996.
Also record aggregate of points - 72.

Biggest attendance
102,569 for Halifax v. Warrington in 1954 replay at Odsal Stadium, Bradford.
Biggest attendance at Wembley: 99,801 for Hull v Wigan in 1985

Most Tries by a player in a Final
4 by Leroy Rivett for Leeds Rhinos in the 52-16 defeat of London Broncos at Wembley in 1999.
Players to have scored three tries in a Cup final are:
Bob Wilson (Broughton Rangers) v. Salford in 1902;
Stan Moorhouse (Huddersfield) v. Warrington at Leeds in 1913;
Tom Holliday (Oldham) v. Swinton at Wigan in 1927
Robbie Paul (Bradford Bulls) v St. Helens at Wembley in 1996.

Most Goals by a player in a Final
8 - jointly held by Cyril Kellett in Featherstone Rovers’ 33-14 defeat of Bradford Northern at Wembley in 1973 and Iestyn Harris in Leeds Rhinos’ 52-16 defeat of London Broncos at Wembley in 1999

Most Points by a player in Final
20 - Jointly held by Neil Fox (2 tries, 7 goals) in Wakefield Trinity’s 38-5 defeat of Hull at Wembley in 1960 and Iestyn Harris (1 try, 8 goals) in Leeds Rhinos’ 52-16 defeat of London Broncos at Wembley in 1999.

Most Cup Final Appearances
11 by Shaun Edwards (Wigan 1984, 1985, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995; London Broncos 1999) – all at Wembley.

Most Cup Final Wins
9 by Shaun Edwards: As above except loser in 1984 and 1999

St Helens squad: Wellens, Gardner, Gidley, Talau, Meli, Pryce, Long, Fozzard, Cunningham, Cayless, Gilmour, Wilkin, Roby, Bennett, Graham, Hargreaves, Smith, Clough, Fa'asavalu, Tyrer. Coach: Daniel Anderson

Catalan Dragons squad: Greenshields, Murphy, Wilson, Mogg, McGuire, Jones, Ferriol, Guisset, Raguin, Croker, Mounis, Griffi, Gossard, Duport, Chan, Touxagas, Casty, Khattabi, Quigley, Bentley.Coach: Mick Potter - Read More, Here