Wigan took a break from league action to welcome the
Catalan Dragons Under 19s side to Orrell.
were up for joining the league and playing games home and
away this season but the RFL pulled them out of the league
at late notice because not all teams could commit to
travelling away to face them. So instead Catalan are
playing "friendlies" sporadically throughout the year
against whoever will play them and Wigan will reciprocate
the visit by playing in France when the first team visit in
Matty Peet took the opportunity to make subtle changes
to his side. Lewis Heckford, normally a full back, started
at Scrum Half. Josh Ganson, son of ex referee Steve,
started his first game at hooker and Joel Verite, who
scored six tries in five Under 16s games last season, was
making his first Under 19s appearance on the right wing.
The French Side weirdly played in shirts that had the
first team squad names and numbers on their backs, so
identifying them with the team sheet was pretty impossible.
The first half an hour was very much a pack battle with
not much between the two sides. Wigan found two tries with
first Gabriel Fell finding a gap on the left side in the
14th Minute before quick hands got Verite over in the 22nd
Minute. Conversion for the first try made it 10-0.
At this point it began to look like Catalan were
beginning to flag but Wigan were sloppy in wasting the gaps
they had found. The visitors then recovered to make the
score 10-6 at half time after Quentin Quemener scored and
Amine Miloudi converted.
You sense Wigan got straightened out at half time by the
coaching staff because they came out with three tries in
twelve minutes to practically seal the game. First Jack
Higginson's long arching break saw him finish well under
the sticks before further tries came from Luke Waterworth
and Kyle Shelford. Two goals from Shorrocks made ti 26-6.
The game then went flat for a long while but two further
tries would come in the final ten minutes. Both of them
fell to debutant Verite who completed his hat-trick. Two
more goals from Shorrocks completed a hard fought 38-6 win.