1. Graham Steadman, 2. Chris Smith, 3. Richie Blackmore, 4.
Richard Goddard, 5. Jon Wray, 6. Tony Smith, 7. Gareth Stephens,
8. Dean Sampson, 9. Richard Russell, 10. Martin Ketteridge, 11. Andy Hay,
12. Tawera Nikau, 13. Tony Kemp. Subs: Ian Smales, Nathan Sykes.
Richard Goddard 2, Tawera Nikau, Dean Sampson, Tony Smith
Martin Ketteridge 3, Graham Steadman 1
Wigan had announced the signing of Scott Quinnell from
Welsh Rugby Union the day before this Friday Sky televised visit to
Castleford. It was a 2nd v 3rd contest but this was perhaps Wigan's biggest
test of the season so far. They had failed to win any of their last four
visits to Wheldon Road and early on the home side pressed Wigan back in
defence. They only had a Graham Steadman penalty to show for their early
pressure and Wigan punished with tries from Va'aiga Tuigamala and Henry
Paul. Andy Farrell converted both and Shaun Edwards kicked a drop goal but
Cas did slip in for a try with an error from Jason Robinson allowing Tawera
Nikau to reduce the lead to 13-8.
At half time Wigan brought on Frano Botica to the full
back position, his knee injury not being as bad as feared three weeks ago.
He would help Wigan build their lead up to 31-8 by the hour with another try
for Henry Paul being added to by wingers Martin Offiah and Jason Robinson
scoring. All looked comfortable at that point but in the final quarter,
Castleford rallied to score four tries and make Wigan sweat out a 31-28
victory in the end.