The next match is always the most important one in the season says Wakefield’s Willie Poching

HAVING GONE four games without a win, next week’s visit of Toulouse Olympique is gaining major significance for Wakefield Trinity, but coach Willie Poching insists that is nothing new.

By Peter Smith
Friday, 4th March 2022, 5:14 pm
Updated Friday, 4th March 2022, 7:15 pm

The promoted French side are also without a victory ahead of today’s home meeting with Wigan Warriors and another loss would leave Trinity facing a team on zero points next Friday, for the second successive week.

Though pressure at the foot of the early-season table intensified when a makeshift Trinity team were beaten 34-18 by Leeds Rhinos two days ago, Poching feels the long turnaround will work in his side’s favour.

“It is a big game, just like [Thursday] was and the week before,” said Poching.

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Tough start: Willie Poching's Wakefield are still seeking their first win of the season after Thursday's defeat by Leeds. Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe

“The next game is always the biggest of the season and that’s no different next week.

“We have got an eight-day period to prepare ourselves, freshen everybody up and hopefully get some people back, create some selection headaches and put a great performance out next Friday.”

Wakefield were without five specialist centres against Leeds, through injury or suspension, winger Tom Lineham also missed out and captain Jacob Miller was concussed inside the opening three minutes.

That rules him out of next week’s game and Poching admitted the stand-off will be missed.

Blown away: Trinity were 30-0 down at half-time, with Leeds' Harry Newman among the try scorers. Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe

“It showed that when he wasn’t on the field,” he said.

“Mason [Lino] stepped up and he will be a lot better for the run out and getting a good 80 minutes under his belt, but someone else gets an opportunity to step up in a tough game next week.”

Of the prospect of getting players back in the near future, Poching added: “It would help, but we had full faith in everybody who went out there [against Leeds] to do the job that was required.

“I just thought, as a collective - myself included - we came up short.”

Trinity outscored Leeds 18-4 in the second half, but the damage was done before the interval, when they went 30-0 behind.

“Ultimately, that first period of the game hurt us,” admitted Poching. “To get some tries in the second half showed some spirit within the boys.”