Matty Smith: Wigan half-back wants more luck in play-offs

By Nathan MiddletonBBC Sport
Experience will help Wigan - Smith
Super League play-off semi-final
Wigan Warriors v Warrington Wolves
Venue: DW Stadium Date: Friday, 3 October Kick-off: 20:00 BST
Coverage: Live commentary on BBC 5 Live sports extra, BBC Radio Manchester, BBC Radio Merseyside and highlights on BBC Two at 17:05 BST on Sunday.

Wigan Warriors half-back Matty Smith is hoping his lucky week continues in the Super League play-off semi-final.

After being named in the Super League Dream Team and signing an extended contract, the 27-year-old also won the club's weekly lottoexternal-link draw and received a £4,000 tax rebate.

Wigan face Warrington for a place at Old Trafford in the Grand Final.

"I had a pretty good week last week obviously the Dream Team and signing my new four-year deal," said Smith

"Hopefully it is going to get even better with getting ourselves to another Grand Final and hopefully lift it again," he told BBC North West Tonight..

Wigan v Warrington head-to-head
Wolves 4-12 Wigan (March 2014)Wigan 24-20 Wolves (September 2014)
Wigan 17-17 Wolves (February 2013)Wolves 22-12 Wigan (June 2013)Wigan 30-16 Wolves (October 2013)
Wigan 20-22 Wolves (March 2011)Wolves 30-10 Wigan (August 2012)

"The hard work we've put in this year, I don't think we need any luck - we're ready and everyone is hungry to succeed again."

Smith is expected to partner Blake Green again at half-back on Friday night, with the Australian set to make his last appearance at the DW Stadium for the Warriors before returning home with his young family.

"For me personally he's someone that I've played really well with over the last two years, and someone who I've become close to as well," added Smith.

Blake Green
Blake Green, who won the Harry Sunderland Trophy for Man of the Match in the 2013 Grand Final, will leave the Warriors at the end of this season

"Hopefully we can finish on a high from him and the other boys who are leaving."

The match is a repeat of last season's Grand Final, which Wigan won 30-16 on their way to a league and cup double.

Shaun Wane's side played Wolves in their final game of the regular season, producing a brilliant second-half performance to come from 18-4 down to win the game 24-20.

It was their third successive league win against Warrington, but games in recent seasons have been tight affairs.

"It's a big club, it's a local derby so you can class it how you want, but internally we know it's a massive game," Wane told BBC Radio Manchester.

"They're a good team who have got good individuals, so they're going to really challenge us.

Josh Charnley
Wigan scored 151 tries over the regular season, the highest in Super league, with Josh Charnley crossing 19 times

"We know what we need to do to win the game, it's just about us executing it on Friday when it matters.

"They'll be challenging us as they're a fantastic team and it's got the makings of a great semi-final this.

"It's got the makings of a great atmosphere, and my players seem to respond in those intense atmospheres, and hopefully we can do it again on Friday."

After finishing second, the reigning Super League champions comfortably won 57-4 in their play-off game against Huddersfield, which gave them a week off whilst Wolves were beating Castleford.

Instead of giving his squad a rest though, Wane has revealed that he treated it like a game week to make sure his players were physically ready.

"Whoever could train last week, we had a real physical week, so mentally the players feel they've not had a week off," Wane added.

"Every player who was available had a real smash up last week, so we've used it to our advantage."