THIS week is a great week to be a Saints fan - I’m of course referring to that epic Good Friday win against arch rivals Wigan.

The Warriors went into the top of table clash with most pundits backing them for the win.

They have been favourites to go on and retain the Betfred Super League title in 2024 ever since the opening fixture.

However, Saints have given everyone something to think about as they take solo top spot.

They now look to open that lead even further this weekend as they travel to Perpignan for another mouthwatering tie against the second-placed Catalan Dragons.

Back to Friday, I thought Saints controlled majority of the game, albeit only a 2-0 margin at half time to show for it.

Bevan French’s superior speed was the difference with the opening try on 55 minutes, to put the visitors 4-2 up.

However, there was to be a significant moment in the game ten minutes later as the Wigan prop Liam Byrne was given the red card for a high tackle on Mark Percival.

Personally I think it was a harsh decision, especially in such a high emotion game…a game that everyone wants to see.

However, given the new letter of the law referee Chris Kendall had no option. He did however have a choice earlier in the game when Tyler Dupree lead with 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 albeit for a different offence.

It was certainly a gutsy second half by the home side, I thought led superbly by Alex Walmsley whose second half barnstorming run put Wigan on the back foot, leading to the try that ultimately won the game.

That try 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 what a huge fan of Tommy I am.

Not only his finishing, which is as clinical as anyone in the history of Super League, 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 Betfred Super League.

Konrad Hurrell secured the final try of the game, stopping Wigan's run of 15 consecutive wins, one short of the record 16…incidentally held by the Saints!

This result saw a slight shift in betting odds for Grand Final glory with title sponsors Betfred. The Warriors still remain 5/4 favourites, with Saints at 2/1 while Catalans and Warrington are both at 9/1.

Wire came off second best in their close encounter with the Dragons at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.

The home side raced into a 12-0 lead, but as we’ve become accustomed too with the Wolves they are far too inconsistent. It’s only the second game they’ve lost this season…both against the second placed French, but have still yet to play the other two sides in the top four ie Saints and Wigan.

So on Saturday as what a game this will be 1st v 2nd.

Always a tough place to go the Brutus Stadium, but certainly against a side who have exceeded expectations so far this season, having seen a big transition of players at the end of 2023, including their talisman Sam Tomkins.

However, 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.

Chris Satae is someone I rated very highly at Hull FC and the guy with the best kicking game in Betfred Super League while Jordan Abdul certainly has the ability to have a huge impact on games.

However, saying all that as we saw on Friday afternoon, Saints are the best team in the league and I think they will yet again prove this with a 10 point win away from home.

I tipped a +6 win last week against the enemy so hope plenty of you cashed in at 2/1 with Fred!