Pat Richards lat minute conversion sealed a 20-19 victory against
Huddersfield Giants at the Galpharm Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The Giants kicked off on a cold but dry day in West Yorkshire,
but the Warriors were spurred on by another sizable following
decked out in cherry and white.
The Warriors started the more brightly as three penalties in
the first two minutes took them up field where Richards kicked the
final penalty – for a high shot on Stuart Fielden – to put Wigan
The Giants struck back on 6 minutes as referee Bentham evened
up the penalty count in front of the posts, Leroy Cudjoe adding
the two points to make it 2-2.
It took another 20 minutes before the opening try was recorded,
and despite three close efforts for the Warriors it was the Giants
who scored against the run of play. In bizarre fashion, Robinson
rebounded off three tackles, sprung from the floor underneath the
final tackle and dived over the try line. Despite appearing to
bounce the ball referee Bentham awarded the four points which
Cudjoe converted to make it 8-2 after 26 minutes.
It took just 4 minutes for the Warriors to record their first
try as Calderwood out jumped Elford to pat a Barrett cross-field
kick inside to Goulding who dived over unopposed in the right
corner, and when Richards added the conversion it brought the
score level again at 8-8.
The Warriors almost regained the lead on 37 minutes when Colbon
dropped a cross field kick and had a half chance on 39 minutes
when Calderwood collected a Robinson grubber to race 60 meters
before being hauled down and having the ball stripped. The
Warriors couldn’t capitalise on the penalty and so a disappointing
first half finished 8-8.
It was Huddersfield who opened the scoring in the second half
as strong forward play and a silly penalty took them up the field,
former Wigan player Kevin Browncollecting the ball at first
receiver from the final play the ball to step and dive over the
line to the right of the posts. Cudjoe added the extra’s to make
it 14-8 after 43 minutes.
Calderwood saved a certain try just 4 minutes later as debutant
Cudjoe broke the Warriors defence and raced 40 meters before the
Warriors winger pulled the big full back down 2 meters short of
the line. Good scrambling defence held the attack out but a
penalty on the last tackle allowed Cudjoe to add two points from
under the posts to make it 16-8.
Another penalty on 54 minutes was kicked by Cudjoe to take the
score to 18-8 as the game broke down on a constant basis and the
penalty count grew ever higher. Brown added a drop goal on 73
minutes but Coley setup a grandstand finish as he finished Sean
O’Loughlin’s break to touch down under the posts. Richards
conversion made it 19-14 with 3 minutes remaining.
And with less than 60 seconds remaining Colbon broke free,
passed inside to Carmont who grounded despite the best attempts
from Cudjoe. Richards kept his composure to kick the touchline
conversion and seal a 20-19 win for the Warriors.