St Helens host Warrington tonight in the first Super League Semi-Final with qualification for next Saturday’s Grand Final up for grabs.
Having topped the regular season table, winning 26 out of 30 games Saints go into the game as favourites. Their dominance of the regular season has been recognised, with seven players being selected for the annual RFL Dream Team.
Our record against them this season won’t play a part on Thursday,” Holbrook said speaking to Saint’s official website, “I would’ve rather have beaten them than not, of course, but it does give them extra motivation.
“This is a semi-final so we are expecting nothing less than a tough game.
“Last year we had to win the last ten games or so to make the semis, but this year we have led the comp from Round One.
“We have been smarter in the back end of the year to get guys over their niggles and to make sure they are primed and fresh.”
As for Challenge Cup runners up Warrington, they go into the game looking to try and make the Grand Final for only the fourth time.
All three previous appearances in the Grand Final have ended in defeat for Wire, a record that makes them the only side to appear in more than one grand final without a victory.
Wolves boss Steve Price told their official website: “Saints are a quality footy team who have set the benchmark this season.
“We’re underdogs but I’m confident in my playing group that we have the belief to go out there and execute the game plan.
“Everyone needs to bring their best game and we need our best performance on Thursday.”
Saints have won all three meetings between the two sides this term, including a 34-14 win at the Halliwell Jones in the Super 8’s in September.
Saints have recalled Jonny Lomax, Jon Wilkin and Luke Thompson for tonight’s game after being rested last time out.
Wire have also made three changes to their squad, Tom Lineham returns from suspension while Kevin Brown and Tyrone Roberts are back from injury.