WIGAN Warriors prop Neil Cowie has been demoted to the substitute's bench after a warning from John Monie.

The fiery front-row was told in no uncertain terms that his display against Dewsbury Rams in the last round of the Silk Cut Challenge Cup was not acceptable.

"I told him his performance was not what I expect from a senior player. He didn't appear to have his mind on the job. We have had a good chat about it and he agreed with what I said," said Monie.

Cowie was at the centre of controversy in last summer's World Club Championship when he was sent home early on disciplinary grounds by the previous coach Eric Hughes .

Cowie's demotion means Tony Mestrov gets his first start of the season in Sunday's mouthwatering quarter-final showdown with St Helens.

The Aussie returned against Dewsbury after missing five weeks with a dislocated finger and will form a new look front-row.

Monie's only fitness worry is stand-off Henry Paul who will be given a final fitness check on a calf injury tomorrow before the side is finalised.

If he fails Monie is likely to stick with the same half-back pairing of Tony Smith and Craig Murdock that destroyed the Yorkshiremen in the last round.

Wigan: Radlinski, Robinson, Moore, Connolly, Bell, Paul, Smith, Mestrov, McCormack, Holgate, Cassidy, Haughton, Farrell. Subs: Cowie, Gilmour and two to be selected.

The televised tie with St Helens (ko 1.45pm) has been made all-ticket on the advice of police.

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