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Match Report: Wigan 52 Salford 18
Posted by Bilko on August 15 2011 - 10:33

Click: Last Match - Click: Next Match

Wigan Warriors v Salford City Reds - Engage Super League XVI Round 24.
Sunday 14th August
2011. Kick Off 3:00pm at DW Stadium.

Match Report

Well this easy victory over Salford stretched Wigan's winning streak to 10 wins in a row, which is our best run of victories since between July and September 2000 when they also won 10 in a row under Frank Endacott.

I was expecting a real hard battle from a Salford side that were entering the last chance saloon if they were targeting a top 8 finish, but with that in mind the visitors performance was quite pathetic and shameful really.

Wigan, for me, were clearly in pre Wembley ease up mode but whilst I agree with coach Michael Maguire that their performance was "very professional", the fact that it took a no more than 1st gear effort to still hammer Salford is saying a lot about how dire the standard of Super League is currently at the bottom end. It's regrettable I think that the league will be continuing with 14 teams till at least 2015 because the depth of players to produce 14 teams is clearly lacking.

The big news to come out of this game for Wigan is that Ben Cross' Wigan career looks to be over after just 4 substitute appearances. He left the field with a suspected broken arm that is said to now need plating. Whilst it is a shame, because he was showing up well I thought, he was always a bonus player for us. I'm sure we can cope with that loss, although I wouldn't like to see any more injuries in the pack.

Coach Maguire gave a couple more players a rest ahead of the cup final. Paul Deacon and Jeff Lima sat this one out with Darrell Goulding and Gareth Hock coming onto the bench. Deacon's absence was filled with Thomas Leuluai switching back to Scrum Half and Mike McIlorum starting at hooker.

It took Wigan just 5 minutes to open the scoring. Brett Finch hit Sam Tomkins with a pass and he threw a dummy which was enough to create a gap for him to get over. Pat though missed the conversion - 4-0 Wigan.

Salford hit back on 13 minutes with a try in the right corner from Danny Williams. I think Brett Finch should have done better with his effort to deny the score but Williams squeezed in the corner before Daniel Holdsworth beautifully converted off the touchline to make it 6-4 to Salford.

It couldn't help thinking that this was going to be one of those afternoons when we flatter to deceive but we were soon back in the lead on 17 minutes and we never looked back from then on. Sean O'Loughlin and Finch combined to send ex Salford man Andy Coley over close to the posts, easy conversion for Pat making it 10-6.

That was followed by our third try on 26 minutes. Again from close range it was a move from left to right that saw Finch and Leuluai combine to get Josh Charnley over for a try that wasn't quite as breathtaking has his previous two efforts in cup ties against St Helens and Warrington. He did well to put down barging over two defenders and with Pat converting off the touchline it was now 16-6 to Wigan.

On the half hour Ben Cross made his way onto the field for Lee Mossop but he lasted barely a few minutes before that arm injury. With time ticking to half time, 16-6 was probably a fair score but Wigan managed to get two more tries in the final four minutes which sealed the result before the break.

Sam Tomkins claimed them both as he supported efforts from the two half backs to complete a hat-trick . First excellent footwork from Finch saw him fool and beat three defenders before, with fourth defender hanging on to him, he offloaded to send Sam under the posts. Then Leuluai made a break from his own half and offloaded to Sam who's paced burned off the last two chasing defenders. Again he went under the sticks and the two easy conversions for Pat made it 28-6 at the oranges.

Even though it was comfortable I still was happy to see us claim the first try after the restart to keep the sweat off our backs. Mike McIlorum was a dummy half under the sticks and his neat footwork totally mugged opposite number Wayne Godwin as he scored close to the posts. Easy Pat kick again for 34-6.

Then seconds after Stefan Ratchford was sin binned for a late hit on Brett Finch, Ginger Farrell took Gareth Hock's offload to crash over from a metre out. Shocking defence though from Salford. No wonder their coach pans it in his reaction comments you can read further down this report. Another easy conversion made it 40-6 - although for a long while apparently the scoreboard was showing 42-6!

Despite being down to 12 men, Salford hit back on 55 minutes with their second try of the game. Got to question the Wigan defensive line because an overlap should not be being created whilst we have a man advantage. Adam Neal scored the try with Holdsworth again converting well from wide - 40-12.

Wigan had shut up shop really though and that was highlighted by coach Michael Maguire deciding to pull both Sean O'Loughlin and George Carmont off the pitch in light of the cup final to come. The returning Darrell Goulding replaced Carmont at left centre and it looked like Fuzzy had capped his return with a try but referee Robert Hicks disallowed it for a forward pass.

We had another try disallowed for a knock on in the act of scoring but I can't recall if that came before or after the next try that was given. That score went to Joel Tomkins on 68 minutes. He was sent in by the superb Finch from close range, although again it was poor tackling from Salford. Pat was loving the easy conversions - 46-12.

Salford claimed their third try on 73 minutes although it looked a clear forward pass to me before Williams went in the right corner for his second. Holdsworth again converted for 46-18.

The best try of the game though was saved till last and it was the little magician Sammy T who got it. Harry Houdini! Pffft! You've got nothing on our Sam. Seemingly trapped heading towards the left, he reversed out a cul-de-sac and went right. He then seemed to turn the pitch into a disco dancing competition because he out jinked a total of 9 Salford players before crashing over in the right corner. He just went like shit off a shovel and in that mood, you ain't going to stop him.

I asked on twitter for a few suggestions on how to describe that try. Efforts included "cheeky... cocky... freakish... all of the above" and "like a deer dodging the bullets of southerners?". Coach Maguire just settled for calling it "special".

That fourth try took his season tally to 24 which now means he takes over from Hull KR's Kris Welham at the top of the Super League try scoring charts. Sam has had an amazing two months since he got booed playing for England. Big thanks to those fans that did that because they've made him an even better player. He really has become freakish and you generally only see those type of players in the NRL. We are lucky to have him here - 70 tries now in 89 first team appearances.

Pat ended his afternoon with a touchline conversion to make the final score 52-18 and the win keeps Wigan top of the table, one point clear of the forever chasing Warrington.

Reaction to the Action

Michael Maguire: "I was really happy with the way the boys performed - it was very professional. There are always areas you can work on, but I thought across the board everyone showed up really well. (Sam Tomkins fourth try) was one hell of a try. Whenever Sam gets the ball, you know there's always something exciting about to happen. Ben (Cross) was rushed straight to hospital and I'm told there's a big chance it'll need plating, so that's very unfortunate news for everyone. We're just looking for some decent news on that one now - decent in terms of the severity of it and how they're going to have to operate. But with that kind of break they tend to plate them, which will mean a pretty long sit-out for Ben."

Salford coach Matt Parrish: "(Wigan) ran harder, tackled harder, did everything harder. They looked pretty good, but we made them look pretty good,. Our effort to defend our tryline was absolutely non-existent. You just can't accept teams getting in your 20-metre area and scoring a try every time they get there - it doesn't matter who you're playing. We work on things in training but you need some desire and some effort - you can't just let people waltz through you. Our goal-line defence was unacceptable. Even when we made a few breaks, we didn't have enough push and enough people backing up."

Team Sheets

- Wigan Position Salford 1
1 Sam Tomkins Full Back Luke Patten 1
25 Josh Charnley Winger Jodie Broughton 2
12 Joel Tomkins Centre Mark Henry 3
4 George Carmont Centre Sean Gleeson 20
5 Pat Richards Winger Danny Williams 30
17 Brett Finch Stand Off Stefan Ratchford 6
7 Thomas Leuluai Scrum Half Daniel Holdsworth 7
21 Lee Mossop Prop Ray Cashmere 8
9 Mike McIlorum Hooker Matty Smith 14
10 Andy Coley Prop Ryan Boyle 19
11 Harrison Hansen 2nd Row Vinnie Anderson 11
16 Ryan Hoffman 2nd Row Adam Neal 22
13 Sean O'Loughlin L.Forward Stephen Wild 13
-
2 Darrell Goulding Substitute Wayne Godwin 9
22 Liam Farrell Substitute Lee Jewitt 10
34 Gareth Hock Substitute Luke Adamson 15
35 Ben Cross Substitute Iafeta Paleaaesina 17
- Michael Maguire Coach Matt Parrish -

Score Sheet

Wigan Warriors 52 --- Salford City Reds 18
Tries (9):
Sam Tomkins 4
Andy Coley
Josh Charnley
Mike McIlorum
Liam Farrell
Joel Tomkins
--- Tries (3):
Danny Williams 2
Adam Neal
Goals:
Pat Richards 8/9
--- Goals:
Daniel Holdsworth 3/3

Scoring and Incident Pattern

5th Minute Wigan 04 Salford 00 Try: Sam Tomkins
- Wigan 04 Salford 00

P.Richards Missed Conversion (0/1)

13th Minute Wigan 04 Salford 04

Try: Danny Williams

- Wigan 04 Salford 06

Conversion: Daniel Holdsworth (1/1)

17th Minute Wigan 08 Salford 06 Try: Andy Coley
- Wigan 10 Salford 06

Conversion: Pat Richards (1/2)

26th Minute Wigan 14 Salford 06 Try: Josh Charnley
- Wigan 16 Salford 06

Conversion: Pat Richards (2/3)

36th Minute Wigan 20 Salford 06 Try: Sam Tomkins (2)
- Wigan 22 Salford 06

Conversion: Pat Richards (3/4)

40th Minute Wigan 26 Salford 06 Try: Sam Tomkins (Hat-Trick)
- Wigan 28 Salford 06

Conversion: Pat Richards (4/5)

Half Time Wigan Warriors 28 Salford City Reds 06
43rd Minute Wigan 32 Salford 06 Try: Mike McIlorum
- Wigan 34 Salford 06

Conversion: Pat Richards (5/6)

50th Minute Salford Sin Bin

Stefan Ratchford (Late Tackle on Kicker)

51st Minute Wigan 38 Salford 06 Try: Liam Farrell
- Wigan 40 Salford 06

Conversion: Pat Richards (6/7)

55th Minute Wigan 40 Salford 10

Try: Adam Neal

- Wigan 40 Salford 12

Conversion: Daniel Holdsworth (2/2)

68th Minute Wigan 44 Salford 12 Try: Joel Tomkins
- Wigan 46 Salford 12

Conversion: Pat Richards (7/8)

73rd Minute Wigan 46 Salford 16

Try: Danny Williams (2)

- Wigan 46 Salford 18

Conversion: Daniel Holdsworth (3/3)

79th Minute Wigan 50 Salford 18 Try: Sam Tomkins (4)
- Wigan 52 Salford 18

Conversion: Pat Richards (8/9)

Full Time Wigan Warriors 52 Salford City Reds 18

Video Highlights

Top 5 Wigan Players as voted on our Message Board

Man of the Match: Sam Tomkins
2nd: Brett Finch 3rd: Gareth Hock 4th: Mike McIlorum 5th: Ryan Hoffman

Referee

Robert Hicks

Penalties Conceded

Wigan 5 Salford 8

Match Attendance

13,607

Weather

Dry and Sunny.

League Table at Conclusion of Super League 16 Round 24

- Team P W D L F A Diff Pts
1 Wigan Warriors 24 18 3 3 738 371 +367 39
2 Warrington Wolves 24 19 0 5 974 365 +609 38
3 St Helens 24 15 3 6 695 469 +226 33
4 Huddersfield Giants 24 15 0 9 615 457 +158 30
5 Catalan Dragons 24 14 1 9 605 553 +52 29
6 Leeds Rhinos 24 13 1 10 640 527 +113 27
7 Castleford Tigers 24 11 2 11 588 702 -114 24
8 Hull FC 24 11 1 12 598 499 +99 23
9 Hull Kingston Rovers 24 11 0 13 633 618 +15 22
10 Bradford Bulls 24 8 2 14 496 716 -220 18
11 Salford City Reds 24 9 0 15 494 716 -222 18
12 Harlequins 24 5 1 18 464 845 -381 11
13 Crusaders* 24 6 0 18 475 709 -234 8
14 Wakefield Wildcats* 24 6 0 18 377 845 -468 8

*Crusaders and Wakefield both deducted 4 points for entering administration.

Round 24 Results
Fri 12 Aug Crusaders 31 Harlequins 12 2,259
Fri 12 Aug Hull FC 40 Catalan Dragons 8 10,739
Fri 12 Aug Leeds Rhinos 56 Castleford Tigers 0 15,156
Fri 12 Aug St Helens 19 Huddersfield Giants 6 6,421
Sun 14 Aug Warrington Wolves 66 Wakefield Wildcats 6 10,296
Sun 14 Aug Wigan Warriors 52 Salford City Reds 18 13,607
Sun 14 Aug Bradford Bulls 8 Hull Kingston Rovers 34 13,441

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