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Warriors v Rhinos: Teams
At DW Stadium, Friday September 28, kick off 8pm
Wigan Warriors battle Super League champions Leeds Rhinos on Friday night for a place in the 2013 Grand Final, live on Sky Sports HD2.
The Warriors are seeking to regain the trophy they lifted against St Helens in 2010, while Brian McDermott's Leeds are aiming for back-to-back championships.
Wigan have beaten the Rhinos twice in the league this season although the West Yorkshire club exacted a degree of revenge by upsetting the favourites in the Challenge Cup semi-final at Huddersfield.
The teams met in the 2010 play-offs with Leeds securing a controversial 27-26 win away from home, only to lose in the semi-final stage with Wigan romping home 26-6 at Headingley.
Leeds are hoping to make it a sixth Grand Final triumph while Wigan are looking for a third title success at Old Trafford. Their first came against the Rhinos in 1998.
Wane has a near fully fit squad to choose from with just injured duo Chris Tuson and Paul Prescott unavailable along with Michael McIlorum, who is serving the second game of a three-game ban.
Wigan's boss is keen to exact revenge on Leeds for the Challenge Cup exit, commenting: "We know it's going to be a tough game. At this stage, it would be tough whoever you pick. We're still hurting from that performance in the cup.
"It was not so much the loss but we under-performed that day. It wasn't us. Sam (Tomkins) has not done things that he did that day, we've not played as poorly since then.
"I've been upset ever since. It is a game I'm desperate to put right."
Leeds make just the one change to their 19-man squad with Kyle Leuluai returning from suspension to replace banned half-back Danny McGuire.
McGuire was placed on report by referee Ben Thaler for a high tackle in last Friday's 27-20 win over Catalan Dragons, actions that resulted in a one-game ban.
McDermott knows it will be difficult for Leeds to win at Wigan without McGuire, but he does not believe it is mission impossible: "It is difficult to win without him. He's been in sensational form this year," he said.
"We'll miss him because he makes other people play well but we have to find it from somewhere else and we're determined to do that.
"After the hearing, we pretty much started planning without him. All the players knew straight away, their minds were turning to 'let's crack on without him and make it a team effort'."
Wigan: Carmont, Charnley, Dudson, Farrell, Finch, Flower, Goulding, Hansen, Hock, Hughes, Lauaki, Leuluai, Lima, Mossop, Murphy, O'Loughlin, Richards, Smith, S. Tomkins.
Leeds: Jones-Bishop, Watkins, Hardaker, Hall, Burrow, Leuluai, Peacock, Jones-Buchanan, Ablett, Sinfield, Delaney, Bailey, Kirke, Clarkson, Hauraki, Griffin, Moore, Ward, Lunt.
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First Utility Super League Table
|5||Hull K R||0||0|
|7||Salford Red Devils||0||0|
|First Utility Super League|
|Thursday 5th February|
|20:00||Widnes vs Wigan|
|Friday 6th February|
|20:00||St Helens vs Catalans Dragons|
|Saturday 7th February|
|15:00||Warrington vs Salford|
|Sunday 8th February|
|15:00||Huddersfield vs Hull|
|15:00||Hull K R vs Leeds|
|15:30||Castleford vs Wakefield|
|Thursday 12th February|
|20:00||Salford vs St Helens|
|Friday 13th February|
|20:00||Hull vs Warrington|
|20:00||Leeds vs Widnes|
|20:00||Wigan vs Huddersfield|
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