Wouldn't call this a poor
performance but it was a very flat effort tonight. It had the
feeling of a pre season game - your just wanting to get it out of
the way and get the play offs started.
Despite the official site claiming Wigan could "ensure a home play off tie"
if they won this, we would have to have seen at least a 170 points
difference turnaround in two games for us to cock that up! It was
a nothing to play for game this - simple as that - and it
definitely showed on the pitch! We never went out of first gear
and sadly Hull never forced us into having to put a sweat on to
win. They had plenty of enthusiasm, but just lacked the quality to
do us some real damage.
Hull came out and
tried to hit us early. They forced two drop outs in the first five
minutes but Wigan almost took the lead without trying after
Richard Horne threw an intercept straight into the arms of George
Carmont. He's the veteran of the Wigan side and it showed with him
not having the legs to take it all the way.
Carmont took us 70 metres up field but from that territory Sean
O'Loughlin bombed a certain try by knocking on a Harrison Hansen
pass over the line. Wigan then got reduced to twelve men with Andy
Coley being binned for supposedly delaying a quick twenty metre
restart. Not sure without seeing a replay but Ben Thaler was in no
No real danger came during that ten minutes. In fact for the
first half hour both sides struggled to get near to scoring with
final passes going to ground. You could tell the week off had just
knocked a bit of sharpness out of them.
The deadlock was finally broken on the half hour. O'Loughlin
made the break and found Amos Roberts in support. Nice flick pass
sent Amos in the corner but Pat couldn't convert off the touchline
so they lead was just 4-0.
Hull soon scored themselves after we knocked on in our own
half. Sam Moa collected the loose ball to which Richard Horne put
in a delicate kick for Danny Tickle to touch down. Still think
it's unjust that Tickle had a fanny about 9 a side tournament,
that Hull took part in last week, count as a 1 match suspension so
he could play today. Anyway he scored and then converted to give
Hull a 6-4 lead.
That looked to be the first half scoring complete but Wigan
retook the lead with seconds to go. Sam Tomkins put in a kick for
George Carmont to touch down - Richards converted this time to
make it 10-6 at the break.
Wigan took just four minutes into the second half to pretty
much wrap up the points. Both tries came from breaks. First
Carmont collected his second intercept of the match - this time
off a Danny Tickle pass. Luckily he had no defenders chasing him
back so his veteran legs took him over the line.
Then on 44 minutes Mark Flanagan sent Roberts over for his
second of the game - Richards converted both to put Wigan into a
Certainly flattered us but couldn't held feeling the game was
won. Hull never gave up but I stood their knowing we had a 2nd,
3rd, maybe a 4th gear to step into if needed.
Perhaps Hull should be credited for not collapsing at this
point. My match preview mentioned they are in worse form than what
we produced to leave us rock bottom in early 2006! So to keep
going is credit to them. That endeavour paid off on 63 minutes
when Richard Horne was sent clear under the posts by Ewan Dowes -
easy conversion for Tickle to make it 22-12.
They were thinking that a comeback was on the cards but it just
never seemed likely to me. Anything was possibly though until Sam
Tomkins stretched over from close range on 70 minutes to put the
result beyond any doubt.
Still left time for three more scores in the final ten minutes.
First Tom Briscoe scored for Hull then Feka Paleaaesina bombarded
his way under the sticks in his trademark fashion. Craig Hall then
completed the scoring in injury time with a 60 metre breakaway
try. It was a bit comical because only Mark Riddell and Feka were
in a position to chase him down. "Piggy" soon gave up but Feka
chased him all the way to a least stop him rounding it under the
sticks. Well done Feka! He got a big cheer for that effort - even
though it meant little to the result.
A win is a win I suppose but it must have been tough for the
players to get up for a game that meant very little in terms of
our league position. Especially after so many big games in recent
weeks. I just worried that we will enter the play offs a bit cold.
We're used to going into them on red hot form. I know we got the
two points but it was almost too easy tonight.