Betfred Challenge Cup quarter final preview
Both the Men's and Women's Betfred Challenge Cup quarter finals roll into action this weekend with the men's action kicking off tonight.
Catalans Dragons play Warrington Wolves in a repeat of the final won by Catalans in 2018, kicking off at 6pm on Friday night, live on Sky Sports Mix.
The Wolves helped erase the memory of 2018 by winning the cup themselves at Wembley a year later but will be on the lookout for revenge and a place in the final four.
Both sides go into the clash with near-full strength squads to call upon, with Greg Inglis amongst Warrington's 21-man squad.
The Wolves have won their last two games against Catalans 24-8 and 30-16 respectively.
Warrington eased past Swinton 32-8 away from home to reach this stage, while Catalans made light work of Wakefield Trinity in a 26-6 triumph last month.
Also on Friday, St Helens go up against Huddersfield Giants, 8.15pm kick off on Sky Sports Mix.
Saints are firm favourites for the tie, having lost to Huddersfield just once in their last six clashes, while they are one of just two - alongside Wigan - Super League sides with a perfect league record in 2021, they also have the league's best defence having conceded just 34 points in five games.
Adding fuel to the Saints fire is the fact that they haven't won the Challenge Cup since 2008, the end of a period where they won five cups in just seven years.
Saints knocked out holders 26-18 Leeds Rhinos in the last round, while Huddersfield's Jermaine McGillvary scored a hat-trick in their 36-18 win over Leigh Centurions to reach this stage.
Saturday's action sees Hull FC take on Wigan Warriors at 2pm, while Castleford Tigers are up against Salford Red Devils, 5.30pm kick off, with both ties live on BBC Two.
Hull and Wigan went head-to-head last week with Wigan claiming a tight 16-14 win. That was Wigan's fifth win in a row against this weekend's opponents, a run which stretches back to February 2019.
But both sides come into this game with wind at their backs. Prior to last week, Hull had been unbeaten all season, while Wigan have won every game in all competitions this year.
Wigan are on the hunt for their first Cup success since 2013 and overcame York 26-0 in the last round, while Hull's stint without the trophy stretches to 2017 - they reached this stage thanks to a 34-13 win over Featherstone.
The curtain comes down on the Betfred Challenge Cup quarter finals with Castleford Tigers taking on Salford Red Devils, a tie between two sides who have had differing fortunes so far in 2021.
The Tigers have lost just one league game all season. By contrast, Salford have one win to their name. Cas, cup finalists in 2014, finally saw off off Hull KR 33-32 in golden point extra time to secure their place in the final eight, meanwhile Salford ran in an impressive 12 tries in their 68-4 dismissal of Widnes in the last round of their cup campaign.
This weekend will also see the final four of the Betfred Women's Challenge Cup decided.
All fixtures will take place on Sunday, with York clashing with Wigan from 12pm, live on The Sportsman.
Also at 12pm is Warrington Wolves vs Castleford Tigers, followed at 3.30pm by St Helens v Featheerstone Rovers and Leeds Rhinos v Bradford Bulls.
Men's Betfred Challenge Cup quarter finals:
- Catalans Dragons vs Warrington Wolves - 6pm - live on Sky Sports Mix
- St Helens vs Huddersfield Giants - 8.15pm - live on Sky Sports Mix
- Hull FC vs Wigan - 2.30pm - live on BBC Two
- Castleford vs Salford - 5.30pm - live on BBC Two
Women's Betfred Challenge Cup quarter finals:
- York City Knights vs Wigan Warriors - 12pm - live on The Sportsman
- Warrington Wolves v Castleford Tigers - 12pm
- St Helens v Featherstone Rovers - 3.30pm
- Leeds Rhinos v Bradford Bulls - 3.30pm