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Wigan Warriors came into tonights game against Wakefield Trinity with two clear objectives. The first was to ensure that they didn’t gift the Minor Premiership to arch rivals St Helens who would then just need a win in France on Saturday. The second was to increase their lead in second place to five points over the Castleford Tigers and edge themselves closer to a home tie in the play-offs.

Wakefield Trinity, with no realistic chance of making the top four, had just one aim...to spoil Wigan’s night.

Wigan coach Wane made a number of personnel and positional changes to the side which defeated the Saints last week while Chris Chester replaced Kyle Wood with Tyler Randell at hooker and had Chris Annakin and Joe Arundel on the bench.

It took just eighty seconds for Oliver Gildart to open the scoring with a airborne, one-handed touchdown by the left corner flag after Wigan moved the ball quickly from right to left and into the hands of the stand-in winger. Sam Tomkins pushed his conversion across the sticks.

After a good defensive spell from Trinity, on eighteen, two quick penaties marched Wigan downfield and on the third Sam Powell span out of the attempted tackle of James Batchelor to ground the point of the ball for Wigan’s second of the night. Tomkins was able to add the extras and the Warriors had a 10-0 lead. 

It had been two real attacks and two tries for the home side.

A thirty-second minute crusher tackle on Gabriel Hamlin tackle saw Matty Ashurst sin-binned but a minute later Tom Johnstone intercepted a loose pass from Wigan ten metres from his own line and the Trinity winger went ninety metres to dive over for Wakefields first try of the night. Ryan Hampshire added the conversion and the margin was down to four points.

Two second from the half-time hooter Tomkins kicked a drop goal to edge his side into an 11-6 lead at the break.

Wigan opened the second half scoring from the boot of Sam Tomkins after a Chris Annakin high tackle in front of the Trinity sticks. At 13-6 Wigan were now two scores ahead.

On fifty-five Wakefielf got their second with a nice cross-field passing move which ended up in the hands of Bill Tupou who dummied the pass to his winger before using his power to lunge for the line. Hampshire was unable to add the touchline conversion, the gap down to three points.

When Scott Grix lifted legs in the tackle on sixty-two he was given a ten minute rest but Wakefield’s ten men again thwarted the Wigan attack as they chose to run the ball rather than kick the penalty.

Morgan Escare scores a sliding sixty-seventh minute try to crush the Trinity challenge when he collected a George Williams grubber to the corner and scored under the tackle of Ben Jones-Bishop. Tomkins added the touchline goal for a 19-10 lead.

On seventy-seven the result was put beyond doubt when Joe Greenwood pushed his way over the line with three Trinity tacklers in attendance to get the ball to ground for a four pointer. Tomkins kicked the extras for a final score of 25-10.

This was an entertaining game between two sides who wanted to put on a show for the watching public. While Wakefield were second best, the margin of difference was smaller than might have been expected before kick off. Down to twelve men for twenty minutes they put in a decent enough fight and gave Wigan a couple of scares before the Cherry and White stepped on the fast pedal and sealed the win. 

A Saints win on Saturday will effectively, but not mathematically seal the minor Premiership but Sean Wane will be more concerned about his sides week-on-week improvement in form heading into the play-offs.

Warriors: Tomkins (4G), Davies, Isa, Sarginson, Gildart (T), Williams, Leuluai, Navarrete, Powell (T), Flower, Bateman, Greenwood (T), O’Loughlin.  Subs: Clubb, Escare (T), Sutton, Hamlin.

Trinity:Grix (SB on 62), Jones-Bishop, Lyne, Tupou (T), Johnstone (T), Miller, Hampshire (G), Arona, Randell, Huby, Batchelor, Ashurst (SB on 32), Crowther.  Subs: Pauli, Arundel, Hirst, Annakin.

Referee: Ben Thaler.

Half-Time: 11-6.

Full-Time: 25-10.

Attendance: .



Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Thu 6th Sep 2018 9:48 PM | Views : 1500 | Replies : 3 | BACK TO STORIES
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