Australian Mark Bell came off the bench to help Wigan make
it a perfect 10 at The Stoop. He had only been on the field a matter of
seconds as a replacement for Danny Moore when Henry Paul and Gary Connolly
combined to set up Bell, who dived over in the corner despite the efforts
of Tulsen Tollett and Chris Ryan. Bell's second try of the game, which
came 11 minutes from time, put the off-colour Warriors back in front as
they stretched their winning run to 10 matches and ended London's
three-victory sequence. Defeat was tough on the hosts, who, inspired by a
brilliant performance from Tollett, had seemed set to become only the
second team to beat Wigan in Super League III. They overcame a 12-4
deficit to go 15-12 ahead as they brought back memories of last year's
famous home victory over the same opposition.
However, they could not hang on and with Sheffield's defeat of
Huddersfield this evening, the Broncos now find themselves in seventh,
having started the game sixth in the table. Former Wigan star Shaun
Edwards has been a key figure in each of London's last three wins and it
was he who set up the first try on 10 minutes. Tollett, playing at
full-back for the first time this year, made a brilliant 50metre break
before being stopped by Kris Radlinski just short of the try line. But on
the next tackle London spread the ball to the right and after Edwards fed
Glen Air, the Australian stand-off dummied and went past Jason Robinson to
touch down. However, Wigan bounced straight back to go eight points ahead
with two tries in seven minutes.
First Tony Smith crashed over on 14 minutes, despite the attentions of
three defenders, for a try eventually given by the video referee. Then,
after Andy Farrell had booted a penalty, Bell collected his own chip to
touch down for a superb score following a spell of sustained Warriors
pressure. Farrell was on target with the conversion before try hero Bell
turned villain to allow London back into the game. The winger fumbled
Tollett's grubber kick and Wigan old boy Wes Cotton was on hand to pounce
on the loose ball and cut Wigan's lead to 12-8.
Sub Robbie Beazley crossed three minutes after the break, the hooker
diving over from dummy half to bring London level, and Tollett's drop goal
on 53 minutes edged the home side ahead. Tollett booted his side 15-12
ahead with a penalty on the hour before Bell struck the fatal blow. His
late try gave Wigan their tenth win in a row but Tony Currie's side must
now bounce back quickly if they are to reach the play-offs.
London:- Tollett, Smyth, Timu, Ryan, Cotton, Air,
Edwards, Young, Williams, Carroll, Gill, Retchless, Matterson.
Subs:- Beazley, Dunford, Millard
Tries: Air, Bleazey, Cotton
Goals: Tollett 1 + 1 DG
Wigan:- Kris Radlinski, Mark Bell, Danny Moore,
Gary Connolly, Jason Robinson, Henry Paul, Tony Smith, Neil Cowie, Robbie
McCormack, Tony Mestrov, Denis Betts, Simon Haughton, Andy Farrell.
Subs:- Mick Cassidy, Terry O'Connor, Lee Gilmore, Paul Johnson.
Tries: Bell 2, Smith
Goals: Farrell 3