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Friday 16th April 1993
|Wigan 25 Castleford 18|
|Central Park, Wigan|
|Stones Bitter Championship - Round 26 of 26|
Kick Off: 7:30pm
1. Graham Steadman, 2. Simon Middleton, 3. Tony Smith, 4. Grant Anderson, 5. St John Ellis, 6. Peter Coyne, 7. Mike Ford, 8. Lee Crooks, 9. Graham Southernwood, 10. Keith England, 11. Tony Morrison, 12. Martin Ketteridge, 13. Tawera Nikau. Subs: Andy Fisher, Dean Sampson.
Tries: Mike Ford 2, Tony Morrison
So a week after THE title decider that decided nothing at Central Park against St Helens, Wigan were back for another title decider this time against Castleford. Saints were two points clear at kick off but they had no games remaining. This was Wigan's game in hand and if they won they'd win the title on points difference. Castleford were the opponents who had taken the title race out of Wigan's hands by beating them at Wheldon Road twelve days earlier. Wigan wouldn't be done a second time by them though. They produced a thoroughly professional display to get the job done. Frano Botica settled any nerves with an early drop goal for 1-0 and then a penalty goal for 3-0. Then in the 18th Minute Phil Clarke scored under the sticks, taking advantage of poor tackling from Tawera Nikau. Botica converted for a 9-0 Wigan lead. Cas soon hit back though when a kick from Peter Coyne ricochet off Clarke straight into the hands of Mike Ford who scored under the sticks for Lee Crooks to convert. The now 9-6 score held for the final 15 minutes of the half.
Sweat was on but soon settled down again by that man Botica in the first minute of the second half. This time not a kick but a try in the left corner to which he converted off the touchline for 15-6. Off the restart of that try, Sam Panapa found space on the right and although Botica was held short, Dean Bell got Jason Robinson over in the right corner and with Botica converting again and with these kicks Botica had also beaten Fred Griffiths goals scored in a season for Wigan which dated back to 1959.
Saints Tea Ropati, guesting in Sky's studio at Central Park, was pretty hopeful at half time but now just five minutes after the interval Wigan had full control of the title destiny at 21-6. Botica edged them out to 25-6 with penalty goals and with ten minutes remaining all looked sweet. But a second try from Mike Ford and one from Tony Morrison on 77 minutes, brought that lead back down to 25-18 and Wigan had a sweaty time getting to the final hooter but the job had been done and Wigan's fourth title in a row had been achieved.
Wigan 9 Castleford 6
Stuart Cummings (Widnes)
Live Coverage on Sky Sports
Final Top of the Stones Bitter Championship
|1st Place:l||Wigan||-||Played||-||26||-||Won||-||20||-||Drawn||-||1||-||Lost||-||5||-||Points:||-||41||-||(Diff: +417)|
|2nd Place:l||St Helens||-||Played||-||26||-||Won||-||20||-||Drawn||-||1||-||Lost||-||5||-||Points:||-||41||-||(Diff: +287)|
|3rd Place:l||Bradford||-||Played||-||26||-||Won||-||15||-||Drawn||-||0||-||Lost||-||11||-||Points:||-||30||-||(Diff: +119)|
|4th Place:l||Widnes||-||Played||-||26||-||Won||-||15||-||Drawn||-||0||-||Lost||-||11||-||Points:||-||30||-||(Diff: +103)|
|5th Place:l||Leeds||-||Played||-||26||-||Won||-||14||-||Drawn||-||2||-||Lost||-||10||-||Points:||-||30||-||(Diff: +73)|