Cooper: The final everyone wanted
Prop Mike Cooper has been a part of the fabric of the club for many years and Saturday's Grand Final will bring different emotions for the local lad as he prepares for his move to Australia at the end of the year.
As a local player Mike understands the rivalry and banter between Warrington and Wigan both on and off the pitch and is excited that the two sides will meet in a final after such a long time.
"I think a lot of fans, even general Rugby League fans, wanted a Warrington Wigan final. The fans who I have spoken to already are really up for this one; there is a real rivalry between the towns with two teams who have been successful over recent years and in the years gone by so it should make for a really intense match and I'm expecting a really tough battle out there.
"We've done a pretty good job on them the last couple of times we've played them so we'll be confident going into this game. They've got a strong pack and those strike players like Tomkins but we've got our own and hopefully we'll have learnt from last time that we need to be at a different pace for this game. Hopefully we can hit the ground running."
There will also be a great atmosphere created by the fans in the stands and Mike talks about the moment it hits you as you step out onto the pitch.
"There's a buzz between the two sets of fans; there's a real rivalry there. There'll be a professional rivalry there too come match day. It's going to a tough physical game. If you see the games we've played against each other this year we were lucky enough to come out on top of that and they've been really physical games and it will be no different out there at Old Trafford.
"It feels a bit different this time as we know what to expect. Even being here today (Monday press) I'm not as nervous about coming here and doing this sort of thing. It's good to be back at Old Trafford and hopefully we can get the right result this time out.
"But nothing can prepare you for the noise. That's what really shocked me last time. We came on a stadium tour last year to try to get a feel for the place but you can't; the only way to prepare for that is to get used to it and we are now. I believe we are in the same dressing room as last year so everything's in place to be the same, we just to get the result this time."
This will be Mike's last game in Primrose and Blue for his hometown club before moving Down Under.
"I'm not thinking about it too much which is the great thing about this game as there's too many other things to think about. I'm focussing on the game but I suppose when that final
General Sale: 9am-5pm
Tickets are available to purchase from WolfWare at the stadium.
Family tickets giving entry to two adults and two children are also available for £70 and can be purchased from the RFL by visiting www.rugbyleaguetickets.co.uk or calling 0844 856 1113.
Please be aware that club coach travel is now sold out.
(photo courtesy of swpix)
03, Oct, 2013