Match Report: Wigan 18 Harlequins 30
Posted by Bilko on April 17 2006 - 13:35
Most flattering scoreline ever. I never thought we could get worse than Wakefield two weeks a go but today we managed it.

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Wigan Warriors v Harlequins. Engage Super League XI Round 10.
Easter Monday 17th April 2006. Kick Off 12:30pm at JJB Stadium.

Thoughts on the Match

Well having watched that I now believe that relegation might be the best thing for this club. We are so dead we need to clear out and start again.

To do anything in sport you have to have belief and once Harlequins scored in the 3rd minute, heads dropped completely.

Honestly I think Brian Noble would be a lunatic to come here. We looked beyond help today. But I dread to think what will happens if he doesn't take the job. Who else is there who'd want to come?

18-30 is so flattering. Harlequins had several near tries disallowed for being in touch, offside etc. Correct calls but they were taking the p*ss out of us in the end I thought.

Today the tackling was woeful. It was embarrassing. Too much shirt grabbing!

Credit to some of the lads for showing fight in the second half, we'll need that in the coming weeks but all season we have been a 40 minute team and again it proved true today. We will not stay up playing one half per game.

Huddersfield and Hull away next, it doesn't get any easier. But regardless of what happens in those two, it's going to be the two back to back matches early next month against Castleford (home) and Wakefield (away - again) which will either condemn us or give us hope.

Story of the Match

The massacre began as early as the third minute when Chris Ashton allowed Thomas Leuluai's kick to bounce. This left Ashton flat footed and Luke Dorn cruised under the sticks for 4-0 which became six with a conversion from Matt Gafa.

Harlequins looked confident and scored a second in the 8th minute. Hooker Chad Randall sent a good pass out wide which allowed Gafa to squeeze over in the corner. Rob Purdham missed the conversion, 10-0.

It was soon 16-0 as Dorn scored his second. He ran from 40 metres out and beat full back Dennis Moran to score, Purdham converted.

Wigan got a glimmer of hope when Moran scored in the 18th minute but I was just sat there thinking we are not going to win because our defence was so bad.

The glimmer soon flicked out. Rikki Sheriffe scored in the corner for Quins to make it 20-4. It could have been worse as Dorn looked to be heading for a hat-trick as he intercepted a terrible pass from Wigan but was pulled back for offside

In the 34th Minute Wigan scored again through Jordan James but we needed to keep them out before half time to give ourselves a chance.

We couldn't do it. Ex Widnes prop David Mills went over and Purdham's conversion left us trailing 26-8 at the break. Boos rang round the JJB.

Within two minutes of the restart Quins scored again through Tyrone Smith. Conversion was missed but 30-8 = Game Over.

Wigan never gave up they fought and fought but they had no conviction to finish off good possession. Once they had 7 sets in a row but failed to score.

We did score twice through Sean O'Loughlin and Kevin Brown, both good individual runs, but it was too little too late.

Game Breaker

In the end it was two tries either side of half time which killed any chance of a Wigan comeback.

Top Player

Feka Palea'asina - Hard to choose but Feka came back strong as ever with some great strong runs off the subs bench.

Reaction to the Action

Caretaker coach Stuart Wilkinson: "We started the game pretty well but there were some lapses in defence and we were 10-0 down.

We then had to chase the game until the 80th minute. I'm absolutely confident that the players can turn it around.

There's a tremendous amount of potential in the team but there is a lot of work to be done.

Obviously the major factor is the new coach coming in. At the moment the coaching staff is trying to fix things on the run and we don't want to implement new systems without the new coach being around. For now we will keep it as simple as we can.

But from our point of view the sooner the new coach is here the better."

Quins Coach Tony Rea: "It was a job well done. I thought we played some pretty good footy.

"We played really well as a team the whole way through and complemented each others play.

"There was a real key period in the second half where we defended our line for six minutes. We put the game away at that point."

Team Sheets

- Wigan Position Harlequins -
7 Dennis Moran Full Back Mark McLinden 1
29 Chris Ashton Winger Rikki Sheriffe 22
25 Sean Gleeson Centre Matt Gafa 18
3 Pat Richards Centre Tyrone Smith 4
5 Brett Dallas Winger N.Bradley-Qalilawa 5
14 Kevin Brown Stand Off Luke Dorn 6
6 Danny Orr Scrum Half Thomas Leuluai 7
16 Bryn Hargreaves Prop David Mills 15
9 Mick Higham Hooker Chris Randall 23
32 Oliver Wilkes Prop Daniel Heckenberg 10
15 Danny Tickle 2nd Row Rob Purdham 13
31 Tim Jonkers 2nd Row Lee Hopkins 12
13 Sean O'Loughlin L.Forward Joe Mbu 16
- - - - -
10 Iafeta Paleaaesina Substitute Neil Budworth 9
18 Wayne Godwin Substitute Danny Williams 14
33 Eamon O'Carroll Substitute Mark Tookey 17
34 Jordan James Substitute Zebastian Luisi 25

Score Sheet

Wigan Warriors 18   Harlequins 30
Tries (4):
Dennis Moran
Jordan James
Sean O'Loughlin
Kevin Brown
- Tries (6):
Luke Dorn
Matt Gafa
Luke Dorn
Rikki Sheriffe
David Mills
Tyrone Smith
Danny Tickle 1/3
Pat Richards 0/1


Matt Gafa 1/1
Rob Purdham 2/6

Scoring and Incident Pattern

3rd Minute Wigan 00 Harlequins 04 Try: Luke Dorn
- Wigan 00 Harlequins 06 Conversion: Matt Gafa (1/1)
8th Minute Wigan 00 Harlequins 10 Try: Matt Gafa
- Wigan 00 Harlequins 10 R.Purdham Missed Conversion (0/1)
14th Minute Wigan 00 Harlequins 14 Try: Luke Dorn
- Wigan 00 Harlequins 16 Conversion: Rob Purdham (1/2)
18th Minute Wigan 04 Harlequins 16 Try: Dennis Moran
- Wigan 04 Harlequins 16 D.Tickle Missed Conversion (0/1)
23rd Minute Wigan 04 Harlequins 20 Try: Rikki Sheriffe
- Wigan 04 Harlequins 20 R.Purdham Missed Conversion (1/3)
34th Minute Wigan 08 Harlequins 20 Try: Jordan James
- Wigan 08 Harlequins 20 D.Tickle Missed Conversion (0/2)
37th Minute Wigan 08 Harlequins 24 Try: David Mills
- Wigan 08 Harlequins 26 Conversion: Rob Purdham (2/4)
Half Time Wigan Warriors 08 Harlequins 26
42nd Minute Wigan 08 Harlequins 30 Try: Tyrone Smith
- Wigan 08 Harlequins 30 R.Purdham Missed Conversion (2/5)
56th Minute Wigan 12 Harlequins 30 Try: Sean O'Loughlin
- Wigan 14 Harlequins 30 Conversion: Danny Tickle (1/3)
74th Minute Wigan 14 Harlequins 30 R.Purdham Missed Penalty Goal (2/6)
80th Minute Wigan 18 Harlequins 30 Try: Kevin Brown
- Wigan 18 Harlequins 30 P.Richards Missed Conversion (0/1)
Full Time Wigan Warriors 18 Harlequins 30

Other Information

Referee: Phil Bentham (Warrington)
Attendance: 12,329
Weather: Dry but Windy.

Match Milestones

Oliver Wilkes made his first start for Wigan.

League Table at Conclusion of Super League 11 Round 10
- Team P W D L F A Diff Pts
1 St Helens 10 10 0 0 315 106 +209 20
2 Leeds Rhinos 10 8 0 2 328 141 +187 16
3 Bradford Bulls 10 7 1 2 280 174 +106 15
4 Salford City Reds 10 7 0 3 236 150 +86 14
5 Warrington Wolves 10 5 0 5 246 199 +47 10
6 Hull FC 10 5 0 5 240 248 -8 10
7 Huddersfield Giants 10 4 0 6 246 260 -14 8
8 Harlequins 10 3 1 6 156 296 -140 7
9 Wakefield Wildcats 10 3 0 7 219 258 -39 6
10 Les Catalans Dragons 10 3 0 7 214 403 -189 6
11 Castleford Tigers 10 3 0 7 214 403 -189 6
12 Wigan Warriors 10 1 0 9 176 324 -148 2

Round 10 Results
Mon 17 Apr Wigan Warriors 18 Harlequins 30 12,239
Mon 17 Apr Salford City Reds 18 Leeds Rhinos 24 7,609
Mon 17 Apr Hull FC 36 Wakefield Wildcats 24 9,898
Mon 17 Apr Castleford Tigers 6 Warrington Wolves 64 5,681
Mon 17 Apr Catalan Dragons 20 St Helens 34 8,294
Tue 18 Apr Bradford Bulls 52 Huddersfield Giants 18 10,932