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|Sunday 8th September 2002|
|Wigan Warriors 48 St Helens 8|
|JJB Stadium, Wigan|
|Tetley's Super League 7 - Round 26 of 28|
Kick Off: 3:05pm
|1||Kris Radlinski||5||Darren Albert|
|5||Brian Carney||22||Ade Gardner|
|4||Gary Connolly||3||Martin Gleeson||T|
|David Hodgson||T||4||Paul Newlove|
|3||Jamie Ainscough||T2||19||Anthony Stewart|
|6||Julian O'Neill||T3||G8||13||Paul Sculthorpe||G2|
|7||Adrian Lam||17||Mick Higham|
|8||Terry O'Connor||8||Darren Britt|
|9||Terry Newton||9||Keiron Cunningham|
|10||Craig Smith||16||Sonny Nickle|
|26||Danny Tickle||23||Mike Bennett|
|11||Mick Cassidy||14||John Stankevitch|
|13||Andy Farrell||T||12||Peter Shiels|
|17||Harvey Howard||2||Sean Hoppe|
|18||Mark Smith||10||Barry Ward|
|22||Sean O'Loughlin||T||12||Chris Joynt|
|24||Danny Sculthorpe||20||Tommy Martyn|
O'Neill Oh Yeah!
Julian O'Neill scored a hat trick of tries and a bag full of
goals infront of Super League's biggest crowd of the season.
Russell Smith (Castleford)
Super League 7 - Round 26 Results
|Fri 6th Sept||-||Leeds Rhinos 18 Bradford Bulls 20||-||15,238|
|Sun 8th Sept||-||London Broncos 10 Hull FC 6||-||3,604|
|Sun 8th Sept||-||Salford City Reds 26 Halifax Blue Sox 34||-||4,135|
|Sun 8th Sept||-||Wakefield Wildcats 20 Widnes Vikings 36||-||3,284|
|Sun 8th Sept||-||Warrington Wolves 29 Castleford Tigers 14||-||6,103|
|Sun 8th Sept||-||Wigan Warriors 48 St Helens 8||-||18,789|
Tetley's Super League 7 Table - After This Round
Top 6 Qualified for Play Offs
It's not often you can shout Easy! Easy! Easy! in a Wigan v Saints derby
match but it's very rare than you can afford to sing that during the first half!
Well, I think I'm just about recovered from Sundays very surprising 48-8 victory over St Helens. I doubt any of the 18,749 in attendance would of expected a result like that.
Like Rebecca said in our site Match Report our players "beat them at their own game - passing out of tackles, giving the ball plenty of width and running their luck." That is a spot on comment in my opinion. That is why we won the game and further more we stopped Saints from doing that in return. I watched carefully for a few minutes early in the second half to see how many times Saints were offloading the ball and they hardly made any offloads, mainly due to tremendous Warriors tackling.
Even though he had a great game on Sunday at Stand Off, I still think Julian would be better playing the centres because that role would suit his tough tackling style more. But he hasn't been a bad signing at stand off for me. He started his Wigan career slowly which was understandable due to the sad tragic death of his young daughter late last year but it the last few months he has shown that he is a worthy signing for me.
Early on in the season, Ainscough played in the centres and really he was useless and deserved criticism. But since he switched to the wing how can you argue with 13 tries? Ok, he does bomb a few tries but I think the criticism he gets is no longer justified. Having said that though whether he'll keep his place once Brett Dallas returns remains to be seen. I think we are lucky to have three good wingers who all score tries at the club in the shape of Ainscough, Dallas and the only Irish winger the world has ever seen, Brian Carney.
Speaking of Carney, I felt his tackle which put Anthony Stewart into touch in the first half was a very key moment in this game. That tackle sparked a deluge of Wigan tries. Also what a great try saving tackle in touch by Kris Radlinski early in the second half on Ade Gardner! Rads flew like superman to get him and that together with Tommy Martyn's laughable pass to the wing, that ended up nearer row Z of the Adidas stand, ended any hopes of a Saints revival. They seemed to give up for me after that.
Must say it was great to see Danny Sculthorpe finally make his Warriors debut on Sunday after his nightmare season and the early signs look good. He put in a good solid performance as a 60th minute substitute. You can't expect much from him during the remaining matches of this season after an eight month lay off but next season I'm sure we'll see some good stuff from him, if he can keep fit.
At the end of the day it was a perfect performance. I can't see how you can ask for better than that in a fiercely contested local derby like Wigan v Saints. We have proved that on our day we can compete with anyone but its important we don't get too carried away. We hammered Saints at Knowsley Road, 42-4 back on the last day of the 2000 season, only to lose at home, 54-16, in the play offs two weeks later. So its a great win but it will mean nothing whenever Wigan and Saints next meet.
Finally, just a shame that we lost last week at Hull or else we would be in a real shout now for not only 2nd place but possibly the so called "minor premiership" as well. Anyway lets just hope for a repeat performance away at Bradford on Saturday and then it's fingers crossed we can nick a top two spot the week after.
Keep enjoying your Rugby League. How can you not after Sunday afternoons like that?