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Last Updated: Wednesday, 22 August 2007, 06:01 GMT 07:01 UK
Jon Wilkin Q&A
Jon Wilkin
The Carnegie Challenge Cup final at Wembley is fast approaching.

Here, St Helens forward Jon Wilkin answers some of your emails ahead of his side's clash with Catalans Dragons.


With Wembley getting closer, are you starting to feel nervous or excited?
Lucy Muskett, St Helens

Jon Wilkin: You feel a combination of nerves and excitement. The nerves will only kick in closer to kick-off, but I have been excited for weeks. There is a lot of pressure on 80 minutes of rugby, but we have prepared very well and are confident going into the match.

You've played in the big finals and internationals. Take us through how you prepare individually and how the Challenge Cup compares to other games.
Bob Parr, Leeds

JW: I just mess around and am very relaxed. I try not to take things too seriously, especially on the day of the game. Some people like to be quiet and focused, maybe listen to some music and just think about their involvement in the game. But I find that forgetting about the game prior to kick-off is best. I don't really need to get myself worked up before the game!

Who do you share a room with you prior to big games? I've heard Sean Long doesn't like sleeping in the same room as you because you're always getting texts on your mobile phone?
Phil, Wolverhampton

JW: I often share with Paul Wellens. He is very laid back, like myself, and we have a laugh. He is constantly pestering me for cups of tea and rooming with Paul is much like a military dictatorship. He rules with an iron fist and basically tries to bully me into looking after him.

Sean Long's confused, I'm not receiving texts at all. I pretend to be on the phone so I don't have to talk or listen to him.

What will be your routine on the morning of the Challenge Cup final?
Ben, London

JW: I will probably lounge around in a darkened bedroom for as long as possible, then get up, have a quick snack, annoy my room-mate for a while, go for a walk and throw a ball around briefly with the lads and just have a laugh really. I used to be very superstitious but I find that having a really strict routine just hinders my preparation. You spend too much time worrying about doing things at a certain time or in a certain way and can become distracted.

How many tickets do players get for a Challenge Cup final?
Luke, West Midlands

JW: We get two. It's appalling.

Me and my girlfriend are going to Wembley and want to go in fancy dress. Any good ideas?
Paul Stevenson, Liverpool

JW: You should go as Eddie and Stevo, the commentators. Your safety is not guaranteed but I am sure you will have a laugh. All you need is a swimming cap and a brown wig with a side parting. It is both simple and cost effective.



SEE ALSO
Countdown to Challenge Cup final
21 Aug 07 |  Rugby League
Catalans angry at Cup disruption
17 Aug 07 |  Catalans
Long targets a dream Wembley win
28 Jul 07 |  Rugby League
Dragons coach hails historic win
29 Jul 07 |  Rugby League
Bradford 14-35 St Helens
28 Jul 07 |  Rugby League
Catalans Dragons 37-24 Wigan
29 Jul 07 |  Rugby League
Jon Wilkin - our new player columnist
31 Jan 07 |  Rugby League


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