Sykes out for revenge against former club London Broncos

REVENGE is a dish best served cold for Wakefield Wildcats loanee Paul Sykes.

By The Newsroom
Saturday, 2nd June 2012, 2:49 pm

Sykes, on-loan at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium from Bradford Bulls, made his debut for Wakefield at Twickenham Stoop when London Broncos eased to a comfortable 36-0 Super League victory back in March.

It ranks amongst Wakefield's worst performances of the season and is the only time they've been nilled so far this campaign.

Sykes remembers it well and is eager to make amends when his former club visits the Merrie City tomorrow, Sunday (kick-off 3.30pm).

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"We owe them one," he said. "We played them down there and didn't turn up on the day. So playing in front of our own fans we'd like to put in a good performance.

"It wasn't a great game, I haven't forgot it. I didn't play particularly well myself so I'd like to put one in for the fans and for the club.

"To be nilled hurts a little bit. We've spoke about it a bit but we shouldn't dwell on it too much, we just need to focus on the job in hand and turn up this time."

There would be double delight for Sykes and his Wildcats team-mates on Sunday if they bagged the two points. Not only would they gain revenge for their heavy defeat down in London earlier in the season but victory would also give Wakefield their first back-to-back wins of the campaign.

Victory in the derby game against Castleford Tigers at Magic Weekend has lifted spirits in the Wakefield camp and Sykes is aiming for more joy on Sunday.

"We lost on Good Friday [against Castleford] so it was good to win, good to put one back over them. This week it's a good chance to get back-to-back wins and kick start our season from here," he said.

"We've not put many 80 minute performances in this year so we owed it to the fans and to ourselves to dig in and be focused for the full 80 minutes at Magic Weekend. If we do it again this week against London it's possible to get back-to-back wins and start on a roll then.

"We've got two home games now so there's every chance we can make it three, but we're just focusing on this London game and everyone's revved up for it."

The desire to string together a good couple of 80 minute performances has been an on-going problem for head coach Richard Agar and his men this season.

Good spells here and there have been thwarted by lapses in concentration throughout the majority of Wakefield's 14 Super League matches so far. Sykes says the squad is working hard to put that right and believes they're on their way to succeeding in that.

"Sometimes it just comes down to a bit of fatigue and sometimes we make the wrong decisions," he commented.

"We're focusing on just knocking the sets out and if we get fatigued, kick it, regroup and try and defend."

Sykes holds a special place in his heart for the London club after seven enjoyable years in the capital. During his time there, he set a club record in kicking 12 goals from as many attempts in one game - ironically against Wakefield in 2005.

"It was a good day, but I play for Wakefied now and I want to put one on London," he said.

"They're a good team to say they're down at the bottom. They've got some good players, some old heads and a good mix of old heads and young heads.

"I enjoyed every minute of it, it's a good club. I got my opportunity to play professionally down there."

He's also reached a milestone of his own since pulling on the red, white and blue. The recent defeat against Warrington saw him kick his 1000th Super League point - and he says there are plenty more to come.

He commented: "It was a good little milestone for my career, I think the points are coming a little quicker now and I'll keep improving my kicking. It's always good to reach a little milestone in your career and it's something to tell your kids about."

See this week's Wakefield Express for all the latest Wakefield Wildcats news.