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Match Report: Wigan 22 Wakefield 18
Posted by Bilko on July 09 2016 - 17:18

Click: Last Match - Click: Next Match

Friday 8th July 2016
Wigan Warriors 22 Wakefield Trinity Wildcats 18
DW Stadium, Wigan
First Utility Super League 21 - Round 21 of 23
Kick Off 8:00pm

- Wigan       - Wakefield    
1 Sam Tomkins       21 Max Jowitt  T   
5 Dom Manfredi       25 Craig Hall    
2 Josh Charnley       14 Reece Lyne  T   
20 Oliver Gildart  T      3 Bill Tupou    
22 Lewis Tierney  T2      1 Ben Jones-Bishop  T   
6 George Williams       6 Jacob Miller    
7 Matty Smith    G3    7 Liam Finn    G3 
29 Joe Bretherton       35 David Fifita    
29 Sam Powell  T      9 Scott Moore    

Ben Flower


Tinirau Arona

21 Ryan Sutton       19 Jon Molloy    
25 Willie Isa       17 Matty Ashurst    

Sean O'Loughlin


Michael Sio

19 Taulima Tautai       18 Joe Arundel    
28 Jake Shorrocks       26 Chris Annakin    
33 Kyle Shelford       27 Anthony Walker    
35 Macauley Davies       31 Jason Walton    


I refer to my tweet made at 9:46pm on Friday Night which read "How the f*ck have we won this?"

A remarkable victory given we played an hour with twelve men and had to chuck two debutants (Macauley Davies and Kyle Shelford) and another youngster (Jake Shorrocks) off the bench into a situation where we are chasing the game with a man less.

This Wigan side may not be hammering sides in attack this season but they are consistently winning tight matches and that is not a bad trait to have in your locker.

I felt Wigan were off the game mentally though early on and it perhaps fortunate that Wakefield had only found one try, scored by Max Jowitt, which had put them 6-0 within five minutes.

A lot has been made about the referees performance obviously given three cards were handed out to Wigan players. Personally I didn't really have that much of a problem with either of them but twice in amongst all that shuffling we saw Wigan players taken out twice on kicks and penalties proving sufficient. I found that particularly galling when Josh Charnley was carded no sooner had Dom Manfredi returned from his ten minute sit down.

Like last week at Catalan though, Wigan found tries with 12 men with first Oliver Gildart and then Sam Powell crossing to put Wigan into a 10-6 lead. Matty Smith had missed a poor conversion on the first try which would have proved very costly indeed had Wigan not won the match late.

Given Wigan's new penchant for playing better and scoring tries with 12 men, after Powell scored I suggested Live on Wish FM commentary that we perhaps should nominate a player to be sin binned next. Trouble was I only went and nominated Sean O'Loughlin and within three minutes the bugger got himself sent off for a poor high tackle. It was only last week that I was laughing at someone on twitter calling him "Super League's dirtiest player" despite the fact he hadn't been sent off or suspended in his entire career. Kiss of death or what?

Wigan got to half time but you sense that the fact they'd only used 1 interchange, which was an excellent contribution from Taulima Tautai, would be tough on us second half. Especially when Wakefield went back in front with a try from Reece Lyne three minutes after the restart for 12-10 after Finn converted.

Shaun Wane really had no choice but to bring on Shorrocks, for his home debut, along with the duo of Davies and Shelford for their first Wigan appearances.

This spell proved tough for Wigan and Wakefield went further ahead with a try from Ben Jones-Bishop, unconverted for 16-10, then a penalty goal put the visitors 18-10.

15 minutes still remained but you couldn't see Wigan coming back in all honesty. However, two penalties helped Wigan down field and they found a try from Lewis Tierney that brought the score back to 18-16 and lifted the whole stadium to rally with over ten minutes still to go.

Wigan were now hammering Wakefield's line inside the last five minutes but they managed to survive the onslaught and a minute left they looked like the match was sealed as Wigan knocked on the half way line.

With Wakefield getting the scrum on half way you expect at the very least Wigan would have no more than seconds to go 100 metres to get a try. The score at Hull at that point was still 15-14 to Hull and realistically I declared on the radio that "first place is probably gone now aand so with it a potential trip to Catalan".

You just couldn't script that over the next fifty or so seconds that Wakefield would knock on first tackle, give Wigan one last chance, which they took after a marvellous grubber from Williams that touched down by Tierney to win the match. Then almost simultaneously Leeds had scored a match winner themselves at Hull and two points behind with an almost impossible points difference deficit unlikely to be overcome had become a two point Wigan lead at the top. Absolutely unbelievable stuff. Conversion didn't matter but it was kicked anyway from Smith and with it his poor miss earlier in the game didn't cost us a point in the end.

In all honesty Wakefield probably lost this more than Wigan won it in. They should never have lost possession like they did in the final minute but the guts and desire from Wigan to fight for the two points was fantastic to watch. They found a way to win yet again and it's taken us to the top of the table.

5th Minute Wigan 00 Wakefield 04

Try: Max Jowitt

Wigan 00 Wakefield 06 Conversion: Liam Finn (1/1)
18th Minute Wigan Sin Bin

Dom Manfredi (Tripping)

25th Minute Wigan 04 Wakefield 06

Try: Oliver Gildart

Wigan 04 Wakefield 06 Missed Conv: Matty Smith (0/1)
29th Minute Wigan Sin Bin

Josh Charnley (Off Ball Tackle)

34th Minute Wigan 08 Wakefield 06

Try: Sam Powell

Wigan 10 Wakefield 06 Conversion: Matty Smith (1/2)
38th Minute Wigan Red Card

Sean O'Loughlin (High Tackle)

Half Time Wigan Warriors 10 Wakefield Wildcats 06
43rd Minute Wigan 10 Wakefield 10

Try: Reece Lyne

Wigan 10 Wakefield 12 Conversion: Liam Finn (2/2)
58th Minute Wigan 10 Wakefield 16

Try: Ben Jones-Bishop

Wigan 10 Wakefield 16 Missed Conv: Liam Finn (2/3)
64th Minute Wigan 10 Wakefield 18

Penalty Goal: Liam Finn (3/4)

67th Minute Wigan 14 Wakefield 18

Try: Lewis Tierney

Wigan 16 Wakefield 18 Conversion: Matty Smith (2/3)
80th Minute Wigan 20 Wakefield 18

Try: Lewis Tierney (2)

Wigan 22 Wakefield 18 Conversion: Matty Smith (3/4)
Full Time Wigan Warriors 22 Wakefield Wildcats 18

James Child



First Utility Super League 21 - Round 21 Results
Thu 7 July Warrington Wolves 40 Salford Red Devils 14 9,024
Fri 8 July Hull FC 15 Leeds Rhinos 20 11,821
Fri 8 July Hull Kingston Rovers 20 Huddersfield Giants 19 6,434
Fri 8 July St Helens 12 Widnes Vikings 10 11,566
Fri 8 July Wigan Warriors 22 Wakefield Wildcats 18 11,821
Sun 10 July Castleford Tigers 38 Catalan Dragons 24 5,886

2016 First Utility Super League 21 Table - After This Round
- Team P W D L F A Diff Pts
1 Wigan Warriors 21 16 0 5 435 399 +36 32
2 Hull FC 21 15 0 6 541 433 +108 30
3 Warrington Wolves 21 14 1 6 599 369 +230 29
4 Catalan Dragons 21 13 0 8 561 443 +118 26
5 St Helens 21 12 0 9 516 514 +2 24
6 Castleford Tigers 21 9 1 11 545 578 -33 19
7 Widnes Vikings 21 9 0 12 443 438 +5 18
8 Wakefield Wildcats 21 9 0 12 435 580 -145 18

Top 8 Qualify for "Super 8s" after Round 23 / Top 4 Qualify for Play Offs

9 Hull Kingston Rovers 21 6 2 13 454 550 -96 14
10 Salford Red Devils 21 9 0 12 508 517 -9   12*
11 Huddersfield Giants 21 6 0 15 463 501 -38 12
12 Leeds Rhinos 21 6 0 15 362 540 -178 12

*Salford Deducted Six Points for Salary Cap Breaches in 2014 & 2015

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