Match Report: Hull KR 36 Wigan 42
Posted by cherryandwhite on September 02 2012 - 21:04
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Hull Kingston Rovers v Wigan Warriors - Stobart Super League XVII Round 26.
Sunday 2nd September 2012. Kick Off 3:00pm at Craven Park.

Match Report

Well, what a comeback! Fantastic for us, but it was a total injustice to Hull KR and, despite the comeback, we looked a million miles off being Grand Final contenders.

The performance in the first half was one of the worst I've seen from a Wigan side for quite a while. Coach Shaun Wane came out a couple of weeks ago with all these phrases like "ah we won't be resting during the cup final break, I'll be working the boys hard" but it never showed during that first half.

Now I wouldn't know how they'd trained going into this game but whatever it was, it clearly was wrong because they turned up at Craven Park as if they'd sat around doing nothing for two weeks since the Salford game.

It was unbelievable how poor we played. The pack was lacklustre and I felt Mike McIlorum struggled at hooker again, just like he did against Warrington. I think I'm right in saying that the penalty count was 5-1 at one point against us and that he had been guilty for three of those we conceded. Not good enough at this stage of the season, it's going to start costing us.

Sad to say I think we turned up with a total lack of desire. It was as if they came out with nothing at all to play for. The reality is we've been playing like this for a while now, being sloppy with our possession. Even the recent victories over Castleford, Hull and Salford were full of errors and that was the issue here as well.

In building up a 26-0 lead, I don't think Hull KR produced anything special. They just punished Wigan errors and did the basics exceptionally well. They drove in hard, kicked us to death on the last tackle, didn't concede crucial penalties or make errors, whilst clinically punishing our errors.

Well I say clinically but Wigan's defence was piss poor to be honest. It was like we've time travelled back to 2006, with us being breached so easily right up the middle. The majority of the tries from Rovers came under the posts and that to me is a clear sign of being mentally unprepared for this game.

First try saw a shocking ball from Brett Finch go to ground and Craig Hall intercepted to go 70 metres for the opening score after just three minutes. Michael Dobson converted before adding a penalty goal on 11 minutes for an 8-0 lead. Could of been worse as Graeme Horne had a try disallowed in between those scores.

Two minutes later though, the second try came and it was right under the sticks. Impressive Rovers prop Scott Taylor offloaded to send Lincoln Withers over and the easy conversion made it 14-0.

Wigan had put zero pressure on the Rovers line and a lot of that was due to our own poor discipline. I mentioned earlier that the penalty count was 5-1 against us at one point and it was penalties that helped them claim a third try on 23 minutes with Dobson offloading to send Ben Galea over. Awful defence. Soft, soft try. Dobson converted for 20-0.

After that try, Mike McIlorum was interchanged for the long awaited return of Thomas Leuluai, and rightly so, I think he was having a stinker. Tommy wouldn't make an immediate impact though because Rovers scored again on 34 minutes. Cracking bomb to the left put up by Dobson and both Sam Tomkins and Pat Richards flapped in dealing with it. Jake Webster gleefully took advantage, Dobson converting for 26-0.

It was no fluke. Wigan had been that awful, but one thing we've done superbly all season is scoring crucial tries just before half time and we claimed two here which were massive in the overall outcome.

At this point I decided to move off the Zeebrugge terrace and go for a little wander towards the food/beer stall area. As I did so, all of a sudden Wigan bucked up. 37th Minute and my memory reckons this was genuinely our first real attack on Rovers line of the game. Neat dummy from Finch got him over from close range and Pat's conversion made it 26-6. Then from the restart, Finch grubbered right towards Charnley who cleverly hacked the ball back inside for Darrell Goulding to score. The ball bounced lovely for him and Pat's conversion made it 26-12, a half time score we barely deserved.

Went back onto the Zeebrugge terrace at the start of the second half and it was all Hull KR again. Wigan went back to being sloppy. Lincoln Withers took advantage to score on 43 minutes and to be honest we all assumed game over now at 32-12.

But you fans didn't account for me. Whilst I was stood on the terrace with a friend and my girlfriend it was 32-0 Hull KR whilst stood in the food/bar area it was 12-0 Wigan. So I decided their was logic in a curse around somewhere so I moved back into the food/bar area and amazingly the game just flipped to Wigan all of a sudden. Either that is the most amazing of coincidences or maybe I need to start believing voo-doo and all that?

Anyway, having moved back to the good zone, Wigan scored two back to back tries on 55 and 57 minutes to get right back in the game. It was Rovers now making the errors and Wigan punished. First Finch sent Hock over before a big break from Sam Tomkins was finished by Richards. He converted only the first of those two, but the lead was down to 32-22.

Wigan though had a sloppy spell again and although Dobson missed a penalty goal, they scored on 64 minutes with a try from ex Warrior David Hodgson. Even though Dobson missed the conversion, surely now at 36-22 with 15 minutes left this was game over?

No it wasn't because Wigan quickly responded with Hock sending Carmont over on 68 minutes. Extras missed by Pat but at 36-26 it was still game on.

KR were visibly beginning to peg out whilst Wigan looked full of fitness and vitality. All of the damage wasn't being done up the middle but out wide and a break from Sam again was finished off by Liam Farrell. Pat converted for 36-32.

The "real time" clock was very hard to read from our angle but when we realised over 6 minutes still remained we were all delighted with that. It felt like it was far later in the game. Their was more than enough time to win and by now we were holding the ball, dominating possession and Rovers just couldn't cope.

The levelling try was almost inevitable and it was fitting that it was the legendary partnership of Carmont and Richards that claimed it. George did the initial donkey work but it was Pat's pace to round Craig Hall that send the Wigan fans into beer shower raptures. Our points difference meant that really a draw would of done but Pat still went on to convert a not so easy conversion to put us 38-36 ahead.

Amazingly their was still time for another score which Josh Charnley finished in the right corner but even though Pat missed the conversion, Wigan had somehow finished as 42-36 victors.

It was a total injustice to the Hull KR fans and team, but the Rovers were absolutely first class at full time. I remember two years ago when we won the shield at this same venue that they were congratulating us and they were same here. The Wigan players actually went across to acknowledge the home fans as they left the field. That is the true spirit of Rugby League!

So Wigan proved again that they can win despite a poor display BUT it's quite simple moving on, we won't get away with that again this season. We need to be playing for 80 minutes like we did in the last 25 minutes here, not like in the first 25. The difference between retaining and being sloppy in possession in massive!

I personally don't think it's a physical issue, they don't look tired to me. Mentally though they are not "in the zone". I found my zone in the Craven Park ground today. Stood in one place we lost 30-0. Stood in another we won 42-4. Uncanny but that was how it was, total coincidence or not. Find your zone Wigan and we shall hopefully be reet!

Reaction to the Action

Shaun Wane: "Yeah (I thought the game had gone). There were times when I thought we needed to change things quickly. Messages were sent out onto the pitch and Tommy Leuluai helped change the game our way. What I do have is great team spirit with a never-say-die attitude with the senior players that rubbed off on the junior players. I'm really pleased because I really wanted to win this game. As it turned out, we won it (although) not in the way I would have liked. To be the most consistent team throughout the season is something that means a lot to me. It's a massive achievement for us. What I wanted to bring to this club was consistency and we ground out a good win. I'm really pleased but there are things we need to work on. We weren't at our best today and we made too many errors and gave away too many penalties. But I have to commend my players on what they did to come back from that deficit is unbelievable. We need to fix things and fix them quickly. This is not an easy place to come to because they are a quality team."

Hull KR Coach Craig Sandercock: "Our defence was disappointing at times but after 35 minutes I wouldn't have said that. Unfortunately that has been the story of our season. All week we have been talking about the last five minutes of halves and we let them get 12 points. They capitalised on some errors on tackle one. You can't make errors against these top sides. We did and we paid the price. We were pretty competitive and I'm very proud of my players because not many teams put 36 points on a team like a fully-fit Wigan who have averaged 12 points against them. We have come a long way since they beat us at their place. We were disappointed at letting a couple of tries in. I want to take about the positives and it bodes well for next season. This was our Grand Final and unfortunately it wasn't to be."

Team Sheets

- Hull KR Position Wigan 1
27 Louis Sheriff Full Back Sam Tomkins 1
4 Jake Webster Winger Josh Charnley 2
18 Graeme Horne Centre Darrell Goulding 3
29 Liam Salter Centre George Carmont 4
5 David Hodgson Winger Pat Richards 5
2 Craig Hall Stand Off Brett Finch 6
7 Michael Dobson Scrum Half Matty Smith 38
10 Scott Taylor Prop Jeff Lima 14
14 Lincoln Withers Hooker Mike McIlorum 9
23 Mickey Paea Prop Ben Flower 23
11 Con Mika 2nd Row Harrison Hansen 11
12 Ben Galea 2nd Row Gareth Hock 13
13 Rhys Lovegrove L.Forward Sean O'Loughlin 13
9 Josh Hodgson Substitute Thomas Leuluai 7
16 Jordan Netherton Substitute Lee Mossop 10
17 Ryan O'Hara Substitute Liam Farrell 16
20 Jordan Cox Substitute Jack Hughes 26
- Craig Sandercock Coach Shaun Wane -

Score Sheet

Hull Kingston Rovers 36 --- Wigan Warriors 42
Tries (6):
Craig Hall
Lincoln Withers 2
Ben Galea
Jake Webster
David Hodgson
--- Tries (8):
Brett Finch
Darrell Goulding
Gareth Hock
Pat Richards 2
George Carmont
Liam Farrell
Josh Charnley
Michael Dobson 6/8
--- Goals:
Pat Richards 5/8

Scoring and Incident Pattern

3rd Minute Hull KR 04 Wigan 00 Try: Craig Hall
- Hull KR 06 Wigan 00

Conversion: Michael Dobson (1/1)

11th Minute Hull KR 08 Wigan 00 Penalty Goal: Michael Dobson (2/2)
13th Minute Hull KR 12 Wigan 00 Try: Lincoln Withers
- Hull KR 14 Wigan 00 Conversion: Michael Dobson (3/3)
23rd Minute Hull KR 18 Wigan 00 Try: Ben Galea
- Hull KR 20 Wigan 00 Conversion: Michael Dobson (4/4)
34th Minute Hull KR 24 Wigan 00 Try: Jake Webster
- Hull KR 26 Wigan 00 Conversion: Michael Dobson (5/5)
37th Minute Hull KR 26 Wigan 04 Try: Brett Finch
- Hull KR 26 Wigan 06 Conversion: Pat Richards (1/1)
40th Minute Hull KR 26 Wigan 10 Try: Darrell Goulding
- Hull KR 26 Wigan 12 Conversion: Pat Richards (2/2)
Half Time Hull Kingston Rovers 26 Wigan Warriors 12s
43rd Minute Hull KR 30 Wigan 12 Try: Lincoln Withers (2)
- Hull KR 32 Wigan 12 Conversion: Michael Dobson (6/6)
55th Minute Hull KR 32 Wigan 16 Try: Gareth Hock
- Hull KR 32 Wigan 18 Conversion: Pat Richards (3/3)
57th Minute Hull KR 32 Wigan 22 Try: Pat Richards
- Hull KR 32 Wigan 22 P.Richards Missed Conversion (3/4)
60th Minute Hull KR 32 Wigan 22 M.Dobson Missed Penalty Goal (6/7)
64th Minute Hull KR 36 Wigan 22 Try: David Hodgson
- Hull KR 36 Wigan 22 M.Dobson Missed Conversion (6/8)
68th Minute Hull KR 36 Wigan 26 Try: George Carmont
- Hull KR 36 Wigan 26 P.Richards Missed Conversion (3/5)
72nd Minute Hull KR 36 Wigan 30 Try: Liam Farrell
- Hull KR 36 Wigan 32 Conversion: Pat Richards (4/6)
77th Minute Hull KR 36 Wigan 36 Try: Pat Richards (2)
- Hull KR 36 Wigan 38 Conversion: Pat Richards (5/7)
80th Minute Hull KR 36 Wigan 42 Try: Josh Charnley
- Hull KR 36 Wigan 42 P.Richards Missed Conversion (5/8)
Full Time Hull Kingston Rovers 36 Wigan Warriors 42s

Video Highlights

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Thierry Alibert

Penalties Conceded

Hull KR 7 Wigan 7

Match Attendance




League Table after Super League 17 Round 26

- Team P W D L F A Diff Pts
1 Wigan Warriors 26 21 0 5 976 423 +553 42
2 Warrington Wolves 26 19 1 6 857 525 +332 39
3 St Helens 26 16 2 8 769 462 +307 32
4 Catalan Dragons 26 17 0 9 762 585 +177 34
5 Leeds Rhinos 26 16 0 10 799 614 +185 32
6 Hull FC 26 14 2 10 660 611 +49 30
7 Huddersfield Giants 26 13 0 13 651 640 +9 26
8 Wakefield Wildcats 26 12 0 14 591 730 -139 24
9 Bradford Bulls* 26 14 1 11 607 706 -99 23
10 Hull Kingston Rovers 26 10 1 15 711 681 +30 21
11 Salford City Reds 26 8 1 17 584 802 -218 17
12 London Broncos 26 6 0 20 540 848 -308 12
13 Castleford Tigers 26 6 0 20 544 912 -368 12
14 Widnes Vikings 26 6 0 20 518 1030 -512 12

*Bradford Bulls Deducted 6 points for entering administration.

Round 26 Results
Fri 31 Aug Leeds Rhinos 46 Salford City Reds 12 15,081
Fri 31 Aug St Helens 30 London Broncos 0 13,262
Sat 1 Sept Bradford Bulls 6 Hull FC 70 10,616
Sun 2 Sept Castleford Tigers 26 Catalan Dragons 46 5,005
Sun 2 Sept Hull Kingston Rovers 36 Wigan Warriors 42 8,845
Sun 2 Sept Warrinton Wolves 54 Huddersfield Giants 6 10,550
Sun 2 Sept Wakefield Wildcats 22 Widnes Vikings 18 8,234