Sydney Roosters vs. Wigan Warriors takes place on Saturday in the 2014 World Club Challenge.
The game takes place at the Allianz Arena, Sydney and is scheduled to kick off at 09:30 GMT.
In the UK, the game airs live on Sky Sports 2/Sky Sports 2 HD, while live coverage of the game is available online with Ladbrokes/Ladbrokes Australia.
Get Roosters vs. Warriors coverage here:
Hosts and NRL champions Sydney look set to make things very difficult for the Wigan Warriors on Saturday.
With an extended season that included a run to the finals, along with World Cup appearances for several players, many of the Roosters stars have seen little action in the preseason build up to the 2014 NRL season, so the Chooks may come in a little underdone.
However, they are armed with all but two of the players that took the field for their championship victory over the Manly Sea Eagles, so familiarity will be far from a problem for this side who put on one of the best defensive seasons in history as well as scoring 52 points more than any other side in 2013.
Wigan are coming to terms with the departure of megastar Sam Tomkins who has taken his talents to Auckland to join NRL and the New Zealand Warriors, and attempting to fill his shoes is former NRL star Matt Bowen who has quickly fallen out of favour with fans after Wigan got their season underway in poor form going down 24-8 to Huddersfield.
A warm-up match against a very understrength New Zealand Warriors side proved little challenge for the tourists, but the reigning NRL champions are another beast entirely.
The outcome of this game will depend on the mind-set of the Warriors. Having started so poorly and then traveling half way around the world, do they feel they can compete with the NRL’s best in Australia? Do they believe in themselves with Tomkins gone?
Sydney Roosters vs. Wigan Warriors Betting Tips (courtesy of Bettingpro.com.au tipster Gary Emmerson):
The task of playing this Roosters outfit in Sydney is daunting for any side and the bookmakers are giving Wigan little respect here with a huge line of 16.5 points for the Chooks’ first hit out of the year and the hosts installed as the $1.17 favourites.
While the Roosters are capable of covering that, it’s a little too big for me to want to take on for the first game of the year. Instead the appeal lies with the point total.
English sides love the physical, straight forward approach, and the Roosters have shown that for all their attacking exploits, they’re very fond of a good physical arm wrestle themselves.
With little footy under their belts on the year, I’m expecting the Chooks to try to take the ascendency up front here and grind out a tough defensive win in a low scoring game coming in under the 44 points total.