GLENN Stewart has promised to deliver “a big game” when returning from suspension to face former club Catalans Dragons tomorrow, Friday, writes Trevor Baxter.
Stewart’s two-match ban coincided with defeats against Wakefield and Widnes, putting greater importance on Leigh’s first ever Super League clash against the French outfit.
And the former Australian Test forward believes his punishment for a high tackle on Warrington playmaker Kevin Brown was too harsh.
Head coach Neil Jukes’ team kick-off in eighth place, one spot and one point ahead of the Dragons who have a game in hand.
“We have got to put the last two results behind us,” says Stewart.
“But it is four points we could have had.
“I am not saying had I played we would have won the games. But I could have helped.
“It was hard to watch thinking there was nothing I could do. So, I will be looking to really make amends for that this week. I will be up for a big game.”
Despite Leigh’s recent set-backs including last Saturday’s 37-24 loss to Widnes, star forward Stewart remains upbeat.
“Bar Castleford, we have had chances to win every game. We let the Leeds game go, we bombed a lead against Wakefield and last week we were flat against Widnes.
“There is a big period coming up with a lot of games when he can get back-to-back points and keep up that ladder.
“So, it’s not all doom and gloom and hopefully I will be helping the team to get back on track.”
Stewart’s experience and leadership has certainly been missed. But he feels the RFL disciplinary panel could have been more lenient.
“We don’t want contact to the head in our game,” he agreed. “And I certainly didn’t do it intentionally.
“I saw him (Brown) juggle the ball and I attempted to get him before he regathered it.
“I felt one match would have been sufficient. When they tried to get me for a Grade C I thought it was a bit over the top.”
Dragons have lost four in a row after opening the campaign with wins over Warrington and Hull as well as a draw with Widnes.
Last Saturday, Laurent Frayssinous’ side slumped to a 38-18 defeat against Wakefield.
But Stewart says: “The score didn’t reflect the game. Catalans bombed a couple of tries and they were big turnarounds.
“So, we are not getting complacent. The likes of Greg Bird and Jodie Broughton are big players to lose in any team.
“And they still did plenty of good stuff. Similarly to us, they are not far away but they are not getting the points.
“But the points add up and we don’t want to get too far down the season when we end up chasing them.”
Leigh will again be without Josh Drinkwater after he dislocated a joint between his tibia and fibula during the game at Wakefield.
Also unavailable will be Jamie Acton, who copped a one-game ban and £300 fine after pleading guilty to a grade A dangerous contact offence against the Vikings.
But winger Adam Higson is free to face Catalans after taking an early guilty plea for a high shot on Stefan Marsh.
n Hooker Lewis Foster has joined London Broncos on a month’s loan.