THE distraction of putting rugby union firmly in its place
was quickly forgotten as Wigan returned to Super League action in clinical
They showed Halifax no mercy in storming home with another
devastating display of power, matched by a resolute defence that gave
The Yorkshiremen never recovered from losing Michael Jackson for a trip in
the ninth minute, albeit a case of mistaken identity, but even without the
dismissal the result would not have been in doubt.
Even so, the Blue Sox were hard and physical and both sides were left with
"There are one or two with a few bruises but it was a very physical game
and I think they did very well," said Wigan coach Graeme West. " They all
came up with the goods. Our defence was sound with everyone working hard."
In the absence of Henry Paul with an ankle injury, Jason Robinson switched
to stand-off and his elusive running earned him two late tries and high
praise from West.
The coach added: "He is a great player - a great young talent. A while ago
Wigan were thinking about spending a lot of money on bringing over Jonah
Lomu but personally I would rather play Jason." Wigan led 14-0 at the
break with tries from Mick Cassidy and Rob Smyth while Farrell added three
Shaun Edwards, as ever, had a hand in most things but his absence from the
England squad appeared to leave him more determined than ever.
The skipper darted over within a minute of the restart and when, shortly
after, he slipped a short ball for Gary Connolly to crash over, the game
was in the bag.
Tempers flared and both Wigan props Neil Cowie and the hard-working Terry
O'Connor along with Abi Ekoku found themselves in the sin bin.
Halifax scored their only try when neat work enabled Fereti Tuilagi to
cross in the corner but Wigan came storming back to finish with a
A tired defence had no answer as Wigan stepped on the gas. Robinson
grabbed two quick tries closely followed by Craig Murdock, Smyth and Simon
Haughton. Martin Hall added two goals.
WIGAN: Radlinski, Smyth, Tuigamala, Connolly, Offiah,
Robinson, Edwards, Cowie, Hall, O'Connor, Haughton, Cassidy, Farrell.
Subs: Johnson (for Haughton 34), Craig (for Tuigamala HT), Baines (for
Cowie 55), Haughton (for Farrell 56), Tuigamala (for Connolly 57), Murdock
(for Hall 69).