Catalans Dragons vs St Helens Predictions: Saints to create clear lead at the top

 | April 06 | 

4 mins read

Paul Sculthorpe Betting Tips

St Helens marched to the top of the Betfred Super League with a 12-4 victory over great rivals Wigan on Good Friday and things don't get easier this Saturday (20:05) as they travel to France to take on Catalans Dragons, who are second in the table only on points difference.

Saints legend Paul Sculthorpe, who landed an 8/5 winner in last week's column, is on-hand with his Catalans Dragons vs St Helens predictions.

Catalans Dragons vs St Helens Tips

  • St Helens to win by 7+ points @ 23/10

What a week to be a Saints fan.

I’m of course referring to that epic Good Friday win against our arch-rivals Wigan.

The Warriors, who have been favourites to retain their Betfred Super League title since the season's opening fixture, went into the top-of-the-table clash with most pundits backing them for the win. However, Saints have given everyone something to think about now as they have taken top spot.

Paul Wellens' side now look to extend that lead when they travel to Perpignan for another mouth-watering tie against the second-placed Catalans Dragons this weekend. But first, let's talk a bit more about Friday's 12-4 win.

I thought Saints controlled the majority of the game, albeit the score was just 2-0 at the break. Bevan French’s superior speed was the difference in the game's opening try with 55 minutes on the clock to put the visitors 4-2 up, but there was to be a significant moment in the game just 10 minutes later as Wigan prop Liam Byrne was given a red card for a high tackle on Mark Percival.

Personally, I think it was a harsh decision in an emotional game. However, under the new letter of the law referee Chris Kendal had no option.

He did, however, have a choice earlier in the game when Tyler Dupree lead with his forearm/elbow under the chin of Matty Lees. Dupree was given 20 minutes in the sin-bin, but has since been suspended for one game by the match review panel.

It was certainly a gutsy second-half by the home side, led superbly by Alex Walmsley whose barnstorming runs put Wigan on the back foot, leading to the try that ultimately won the game. That was scored by the ever-impressive Tommy Makinson, who latched on to a pinpoint Lewis Dodd kick to the corner.

Anybody who has read my column over the years will know I'm a huge fan of Tommy. Not only his finishing, which is as clinical as anyone in Super League history, but his sheer competitiveness and effort-based areas, namely backfield carries and his edge defence. No wonder his coach and former teammate Paul Wellens said he’s the best winger in the league.

Konrad Hurrell secured the final try of the game, stopping Wigan's run of 15 consecutive victories - one short of the record 16 held by the Saints.

Last Friday's result saw a slight shift in the Grand Final betting with title sponsors Betfred. The Warriors remain favourites at 5/4, but Saints have shortened slightly into 2/1 - while Warrington and Catalans are both available at 9/1.

So, back to this weekend across The Channel. The Brutus Stadium is always a tough place to go and this is a dangerous side who have exceeded expectations so far this season having seen a big transition of players - including talisman Sam Tomkins - at the end of last year.

They have proven they are still a huge threat and have players who can damage you if given the opportunity. Tom Johnstone has vastly improved since his move to the South of France, while Chris Satae is someone I rated very highly at Hull FC - and the guy with the best kicking game in the division in Jordan Abdul has the ability to have a huge impact on any game.

Despite all that, Saints are the best team in the league as we saw on Good Friday and I think they will prove this yet again with a win by seven points or more.

St Helens to beat Catalans Dragons by seven points or more at 23-10

I tipped an 8/5 winner last week so fingers crossed it's the same story on Saturday night!

Find more Super League Tips here at Betfred Insights

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