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Page last updated at 18:45 GMT, Saturday, 11 September 2010 19:45 UK

Super League play-off verdict

Leeds Slam
Kevin Sinfield celebrates Leeds' third straight Grand Final win a year ago

The 2010 Super League play-offs started on Friday night with St Helens' 28-12 win over Challenge Cup winners Warrington as they set their sights on another Grand Final appearance at Old Trafford on 2 October.

Saturday's elimination play-offs saw Huddersfield edge past surprise packet Crusaders while Hull KR defeated city rivals Hull FC at the KC Stadium.

Wigan then play Leeds on Sunday as they look to join Saints in the qualifying semi-finals in a fortnight's time, while the qualifying play-off losers will play the winners of the elimination play-offs next weekend.

BBC 5 live sports extra have commentary on Sunday's Wigan-Leeds game (from 1840 BST) when Wakefield coach John Kear will join commentators Stuart Pyke and Dave Woods BST at the DW Stadium.

Here, Kear gives his verdict on the game and who he thinks will emulate Saints, Huddersfield and Hull KR as winners in the first week of the play-offs.


Wigan have been the most consistent team by far this season and that showed by fact that they were four points clear of second-placed St Helens at the end of the Super League regular season.

Wigan's Pat Richards
Pat Richards has been Wigan's top points scorer this season

I think they will get to the Grand Final based on their defensive consistency and their offensive execution. That makes them favourites to win here.

Wigan have been relatively injury-free all season and, with the emergence of some talented youngsters, it is all coming together at a good time.

Leeds showed plenty of spirit last week to beat Hull and secure fourth place but they are missing the grunt up front from the likes of Jamie Peacock, Jamie Jones-Buchanan and Luke Burgess, who are all out injured. But, with the team who loses having another chance next week, a loss is not as critical.

John Kear was speaking to BBC Sport's Elizabeth Hudson.

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see also
St Helens 28-12 Warrington
10 Sep 10 |  My Club
Radford play-off ban overturned
08 Sep 10 |  Hull
Hull FC issue play-off drink ban
08 Sep 10 |  Hull
Giants have momentum - Robinson
07 Sep 10 |  Huddersfield
Noble plays down quit speculation
07 Sep 10 |  Crusaders
Rhinos are the underdogs - Senior
07 Sep 10 |  Leeds
Richards wins RLWA player award
07 Sep 10 |  Wigan
Super League play-offs 2010
12 Sep 10 |  Rugby League

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