11th October 2002: St Helens 24 Wigan 8
Posted by cherryandwhite on October 21 2013 - 22:29

Extended News

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St Helens v Wigan Warriors - Tetley's Super League VII Elimination Play Off.
Friday 11th October 2002. Kick Off 8:00pm at Knowsley Road.

CherryandWhite.co.uk Match Report by Rebecca Smith

Saints end Warriors season.

The away trip to St Helens proved to be a match too far for the Warriors as they went down 24-8 in very wet conditions at Knowsley Road.

Wigan huffed and puffed during the second half but had absolutely no answer to the superb defensive display produced by Saints.

The writing was on the wall for Wigan in the first set of six when Craig Smith criminally knocked on. Darren Britt was stopped short of the line but a wide pass from Sean Long allowed Anthony Stewart to the score in the corner after just 90 seconds. Paul Sculthorpe failed to add the extras but ill discipline from Wigan allowed him to make it 6-0 after 7 minutes.

Then a second vital error from the Warriors allowed Saints to increase there lead further. Adrian Lam, who had probably his worst ever Wigan performance in this game, kicked out on the full. Saints used the shortened field well and Sean Long made a great run from dummy half which sprung the gap for Chris Joynt to score. However Sculthorpe again missed the conversion so it was a 10-0 lead that Saints held after 13 minutes.

Wigan finally got on the scoreboard in 22nd minute when Andy Farrell slotted over a penalty but Paul Sculthorpe cancelled it out four minutes later by kicking a penalty of his own following a bit of hand bagging from Craig Smith and Sean Long. Both players where set to the sin bin and Smith penalised for apparent use of the elbow.

Sculthorpe then missed a penalty and moments after that Wigan got their only four pointer of the game. Mick Cassidy produced a great solo try after beating four defenders on the burst in what was our first real attack of the game. Farrell converted and despite not playing well we were in the game at 12-8 after 32 minutes.

Saints came straight back at Wigan though, Keiron Cunningham scored four minutes before the break. After three misses from Sculthorpe, Long took over the kicking duties and converted the try to stretch Saints lead back to ten points. The ended the first half scoring at 18-8 to St Helens.

Wigan needed the first points of the second half and they came out looking for it. They mounted a sustained spell of pressure for the first time in the game and Shaun Briscoe went over in the corner but it was ruled out by the video referee who ruled that he had touched the corner flag.

The Warriors were applying the pressure but when Saints finally got the ball the outstanding Long produced a superb chip kick which allowed Sculthorpe to increase the lead. Long conversion made the score 24-8 on 58 minutes.

After that try we then lost Harvey Howard with concussion, Mick Cassidy with a calf tear and Terry Newton aggravated his elbow injury.

In the last quarter, Wigan tried to get back in the game but couldn't thwart the excellent goal line defence from Saints. Kris Radlinski was stopped just short of the line and Brian Carney's break down the right coming to nothing.

At the final hooter the Wigan fans gave the lads a great cheer for a fantastic season. Dave Furner and Gary Connolly who are both leaving us for pastures new got special attention and it was great to see Dave kiss his Wigan badge. He may be off to Leeds but there's no doubt he wishes he was staying here. His heart is well and truly in Wigan.

At the end of the day Saints deserved the victory. Wigan had far too many walking wounded on the pitch and like our rivals the year before the injuries meant it was just too big a task.

At the end of the game coach Stuart Raper said:

"Losing is always tough, especially when it's your last game of the season,"

"That try before half time was hard on us but I thought we came out in the second half really strongly, Briscoe went pretty close and that could have changed the game for us.

"The conditions changed everyone's game plan and you've got to give credit to St Helens, they were definitely the better side on the day."

Team Sheets

St Helens - Wigan
No.
Player
Pos No.
Player
1 Paul Wellens Full Back 1 Kris Radlinski
5 Darren Albert Wing 5 Brian Carney
3 Martin Gleeson Centre 4 Gary Connolly
4 Paul Newlove Centre 20 Martin Aspinwall
19 Anthony Stewart Wing 27 Shaun Briscoe
13 Paul Sculthorpe Stand Off 6 Julian O'Neill
7 Sean Long Scrum Half 7 Adrian Lam
8 Darren Britt Prop
8
Terry O'Connor
9 Keiron Cunningham Hooker 9 Terry Newton
10 Barry Ward Prop 10 Craig Smith
23 Mike Bennett 2nd Row 11 Mick Cassidy
15 Tim Jonkers 2nd Row 12 David Furner
11 Chris Joynt L.Forward 13 Andrew Farrell
2 Sean Hoppe Sub 17 Harvey Howard
12 Peter Shiels Sub 22 Sean O'Loughlin
14 John Stankevitch Sub 24 Danny Sculthorpe
17 Mick Higham Sub 26 Danny Tickle

Score Sheet

St Helens 24 --- Wigan Warriors 8
Tries:
Anthony Stewart
Chris Joynt
Keiron Cunningham
Paul Sculthorpe
--- Tries:
Mick Cassidy
Goals:
Paul Sculthorpe 2
Sean Long 2
--- Goals:
Andy Farrell 2

Half Time

St Helens 18 Wigan 8

Video Highlights

Referee

Russell Smith (Castleford)

Match Attendance

15,100 (Sell Out)

CherryandWhite.co.uk Man of the Match

Andy Farrell

Television

Super League 7 - Week 3 Play Off Results

Friday 11th October 2002
Eliminator: St Helens 24 Wigan Warriors 8

Super League 7 - Grand Final Result

Saturday 19th October 2002
Bradford Bulls 18 St Helens 19