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Match Report: Wigan 42 London 30
Posted by cherryandwhite on March 19 2012 - 10:12

Click: Last Match - Click: Next Match

Wigan Warriors v London Broncos - Stobart Super League XVII Round 7.
Sunday 18th March 2012. Kick Off 3:00pm at DW Stadium.

Match Report

Well the talk after this game was about Wigan being poor. I'm not sure we were that poor! Obviously conceding thirty points in defence is disappointing but this was not the London Broncos that had looked dire in losing it's opening five matches. They clearly had got a huge lift from beating Castleford 42-16 at home last weekend and came here full of spark, vigour and enthusiasm.

The Broncos were well led by good combination from half backs Michael Witt and Craig Gower, and I actually take the view that we did well to win this game because I thought London were excellent on the day. At 18-6 down we could have collapsed in a heap but instead we dug deep, scored some good tries, and got a hard earned two points.

After the Widnes debacle last week, coach Wane recalled Sam Tomkins, Pat Richards, Thomas Leuluai, Sean O'Loughlin and Liam Farrell with Matty Russell, Anthony Gelling, Joe Mellor, Logan Tomkins and Tom Spencer dropping out. George Carmont and Paul Prescott also returned from injury in place of Lee Mossop and Jack Hughes.

Amazingly it took Wigan a full 8 minutes to get possession of the football in this contest and that early Broncos pressure had to tell. It was naivety really from Josh Charnley that put us right on the back foot. A bomb had gone out towards the left and it was going nowhere really but Josh went to collect the ball in the air and subsequently got bundled into touch. You could see that coming a mile off. Soon after that Michael Witt squeezed in the right corner where the defensive line just wasn't set. He then nailed a touchline conversion to give them a 6-0 lead.

Wigan finally got the football as the clock ticked into the 9th minute and they were soon on the score sheet to level it up. Brett Finch scored it from a standing start with a diagonal run through the middle of the Broncos defence. Pat converted for 6-6.

Sat there now thinking, here we go, we'll take full control of this one now, but London had other ideas. They scored the games next two tries. First on 18 minutes good passing from Gower and Luke Dorn saw Michael Robertson score in the left corner. Then on 28 minutes Dan Sarginson mugged Sam Tomkins to get over from close range. Witt converted both tries to give them an 18-6 lead.

The bottom line for Wigan here was that they were playing at a slow lethargic pace. These kind of games at home, when the away stand is shut, are always difficult ones to play if you are not setting the tone and that's really why Wigan found themselves 18-6 down. After that score they clearly stepped up the pace and score three tries before half time to take the lead.

First, on 31 minutes, Finch's offload out of a tackle to Jeff Lima allowed him to send Gareth Hock crashing through a missed tackle by Chris Bailey. A penalty soon after the restart got Wigan up field again and this time it was Sam Tomkins who found Lima with an offload before Darrell Goulding showed good pace to get in the right corner. Then on the next set, brilliant footwork from Sam got him clear through. Although the defence recovered somewhat, they never got him tackled and hands left from Finch and O'Loughlin allowed George Carmont to steam over in the left corner. Pat converted all three tries to give Wigan a 24-18 half time lead.

Into the second half and Wigan scored pretty quickly to extend that lead. Excellent offload from Hock got Richards in and with his conversion the lead was 30-18. Pat was now down to just 5 points needed for 2,000 in his Wigan career and with 38 minutes to go it was odds on that the landmark would be reached today, but he would end up stranded in the end on 1,999 points.

Your thinking now whether Wigan could repeat the clinical second half job they produced against Catalan in the previous home match but London hit back just four minutes later to keep Wigan sweating. Gower took advantage of a bad missed tackle to burst up the middle and it allowed him to send ex Wigan Chris Melling over. Witt's conversion made it 30-24 and still game on.

London were all over us after that and we did well not to allow them to level the scores. I would have feared for us had they scored next but thankfully we soaked up pressure before taking advantage of a London error which gave us a scrum feed ten metres out on 56 minutes. Finch was the capitalist with another lovely jinking step getting him chiming at the line. It took some finishing but he had the power to see off the last ditch tackling. Pat conversion made it 36-24.

Then on 64 minutes came a moment that highlights the difference between a good half back and one of sheer genius. Wigan received an offside penalty twenty metres from their own line and London ambled back expecting the kick to touch. Sam Tomkins though had other ideas. He tapped the penalty and had raced past the whole Broncos defensive line before they had even noticed what was happening. It was totally embarrassing for them. They were absolutely mugged. He completed an unopposed diagonal 78 metre dash under the posts and really it was a try that was needed because the game still hadn't felt comfortable. Pat's conversion made it 42-24.

London still left Wigan sweating when Witt scored his second try from an intercept pass thrown by Leuluai on 71 minutes but that proved to be the final score of the contest, which Wigan had won 42-30.

So the 30 points conceded will be a bit of a concern but to be honest I think that was a performance in which we had more than half an eye on the Warrington match next Friday. We always looked like we were playing well within ourselves and the fact Warrington had a similar scruffy win suggests that even more to me. It'll be totally different on Friday with a packed house inside the DW. Bring it on!

Reaction to the Action

Shaun Wane: "London did a good job but I'm disappointed with the tries we let in. We've a lot to work on. We scored some good tries but 30 points is unacceptable. I don't mean any disrespect to London Broncos, but we have high standards here. There were some poor defensive reads, some one-on-one misses, things we can be better at, but we'll fix up for Warrington."

London Coach Rob Powell: "We scored 42 points last week and 30 today so we're getting better offensively. Last week has given the players some confidence to play with the ball and it's pleasing to come to somewhere like Wigan and score 30 points. But if you score 30 points, especially away from home, you need to back it up in defence to win the game. It's disappointing we weren't stronger defensively at crucial parts in the game."

Team Sheets

- Wigan Position London 1
1 Sam Tomkins Full Back Luke Dorn 1
2 Josh Charnley Winger Michael Robertson 5
3 Darrell Goulding Centre David Howell 4
4 George Carmont Centre Dan Sarginson 24
5 Pat Richards Winger Jamie O'Callaghan 3
6 Brett Finch Stand Off Michael Witt 6
7 Thomas Leuluai Scrum Half Craig Gower 7
8 Paul Prescott Prop Antonio Kaufusi 8
9 Mike McIlorum Hooker Chad Randall 9
21 Epalahame Lauaki Prop Tony Clubb 13
11 Harrison Hansen 2nd Row Matt Cook 20
12 Gareth Hock 2nd Row Jason Golden 17
13 Sean O'Loughlin L.Forward Chris Bailey 12
-
14 Jeff Lima Substitute Karl Temata 8
16 Liam Farrell Substitute Mark Bryant 10
17 Chris Tuson Substitute Julien Rinaldi 14
23 Ben Flower Substitute Chris Melling 16
- Shaun Wane Coach Rob Powell -

Score Sheet

Wigan Warriors 42 --- London Broncos 30
Tries (7):
Brett Finch 2
Gareth Hock
Darrell Goulding
George Carmont
Pat Richards
Sam Tomkins
--- Tries (5):
Michael Witt 2
Michael Robertson
Dan Sarginson
Chris Melling
Goals:
Pat Richards 7/7
--- Goals:
Michael Witt 5/5

Scoring and Incident Pattern

5th Minute Wigan 00 London 04 Try: Michael Witt
- Wigan 00 London 06 Conversion: Michael Witt (1/1)
11th Minute Wigan 04 London 06 Try: Brett Finch
- Wigan 06 London 06 Conversion: Pat Richards (1/1)
18th Minute Wigan 06 London 10 Try: Michael Robertson
- Wigan 06 London 12 Conversion: Michael Witt (2/2)
28th Minute Wigan 06 London 16 Try: Dan Sarginson
- Wigan 06 London 18 Conversion: Michael Witt (3/3)
31st Minute Wigan 10 London 18 Try: Gareth Hock
- Wigan 12 London 18 Conversion: Pat Richards (2/2)
34th Minute Wigan 16 London 18 Try: Darrell Goulding
- Wigan 18 London 18 Conversion: Pat Richards (3/3)
37th Minute Wigan 22 London 18 Try: George Carmont
- Wigan 24 London 18 Conversion: Pat Richards (4/4)
Half Time Wigan Warriors 24 London Broncos 18
42nd Minute Wigan 28 London 18 Try: Pat Richards
- Wigan 30 London 18 Conversion: Pat Richards (5/5)
46th Minute Wigan 30 London 22 Try: Chris Melling
- Wigan 30 London 24 Conversion: Michael Witt (4/4)
56th Minute Wigan 34 London 24 Try: Brett Finch (2)
- Wigan 36 London 24 Conversion: Pat Richards (6/6)
64th Minute Wigan 40 London 24 Try: Sam Tomkins
- Wigan 42 London 24 Conversion: Pat Richards (7/7)
71st Minute Wigan 42 London 28 Try: Michael Witt (2)
- Wigan 42 London 30 Conversion: Michael Witt (5/5)
Full Time Wigan Warriors 42 London Broncos 30

Video Highlights

Top 5 Wigan Players as voted on our Message Board

Man of the Match: Brett Finch
2nd: Gareth Hock 3rd: Sean O'Loughlin 4th: Sam Tomkins 5th: Darrell Goulding

Referee

James Child

Penalties Conceded

Wigan 8 London 8

Match Attendance

12,608 (Away Stand Closed)

Weather

Dry.

League Table after Super League 17 Round 7

- Team P W D L F A Diff Pts
1 Huddersfield Giants 7 6 0 1 229 104 +125 12
2 Warrington Wolves 7 5 1 1 217 128 +89 11
3 Wigan Warriors 7 5 0 2 250 125 +125 10
4 Leeds Rhinos 6 5 0 1 202 100 +102 10
5 Catalan Dragons 6 5 0 1 168 130 +38 10
6 Hull FC 6 4 1 1 158 88 +70 9
7 Bradford Bulls 7 4 0 3 142 173 -31 8
8 Salford City Reds 7 3 0 4 160 210 -50 6
9 St Helens 7 2 1 4 174 155 +19 5
10 Hull Kingston Rovers 7 2 1 4 156 178 -22 5
11 Wakefield Wildcats 6 1 0 5 114 150 -36 2
12 London Broncos 7 1 0 6 148 238 -90 2
13 Castleford Tigers 7 1 0 6 94 224 -130 2
14 Widnes Vikings 7 1 0 6 101 310 -209 2

Round 7 Results
Fri 16 Mar Huddersfield Giants 42 Castleford Tigers 4 6,928
Fri 16 Mar Salford City Reds 16 Leeds Rhinos 56 6,891
Sat 17 Mar Bradford Bulls 12 St Helens 8 11,360
Sat 17 Mar Catalan Dragons 20 Hull Kingston Rovers 12 7,337
Sun 18 Mar Hull FC 58 Widnes Vikings 10 10,705
Sun 18 Mar Warrington Wolves 32 Wakefield Wildcats 30 10,686
Sun 18 Mar Wigan Warriors 42 London Broncos 30 12,608

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