3rd October 2003: Wigan 40 St Helens 24
Posted by cherryandwhite on October 21 2013 - 22:43

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Wigan Warriors v St Helens Tetley's Super League Elimination Play Off
Friday 3rd October 2003. Kick Off 8:00pm at JJB Stadium.

CherryandWhite.co.uk Match Report by Rebecca Smith

A GRAND final appearance at Old Trafford in a fortnight looks far from pie in the sky for Wigan after a near perfect first half performance blasted bitter rivals and defending champions St Helens out of the competition.

The Warriors racked up six tries and conceded only one in an error free first forty minutes which shocked the record play-off crowd of 21,790, who had all expected a far closer contest.

But Wigan’s wonderful front row of Craig Smith, Quentin Pongia and Terry Newton ripped the Saints apart in the middle of the park and Ian Millward’s men were forced to try and slow the game down to keep pace with the men from the right side of Billinge Hill.

Terry Newton’s towering performance against Keiron Cunningham must have given GB coach David Waite, who was watching in the West Stand, plenty to think about ahead of this autumn’s internationals.

Waite would also have seen, if he didn’t know already, just how vital Andy Farrell is to his team, club or country. The Wigan captain hadn’t trained all week because of a knee injury. But after having it drained he took to the field with a pain killing injection, heavy strapping and a visible limp but still put in 70 minutes of try saving defence and try making attack.

Mike Gregory said: ‘I tried to drag him off 10 minutes into the second half but he wouldn’t come off. We’ll have to wrap him up in cotton wool and hope for the best.’

Wigan got off to a flying start and never looked back. Danny Tickle scored in the fifth minute after taking a flicked pass from Farrell, which a seething Ian Millward was adamant was forward. But a few minutes later Adrian Lam went over for the first of his brace of tries. Wigan got position on the Saints line after Darren Smith and paul Sculthorpe were penalised for holding Pongia down. Terry Newton fired a pass out to his scrum-half and the PNG star dived through the gap.

Mick Cassidy got the next try, collecting Lam’s kick on the full, and although Jason Hooper showed Wigan were not impenetrable by scoring through poor tackles from O’Connor and Newton, the tide didn’t turn and Wigan got three more before break, Lam’s second, an O’Loughlin score out wide and an 80 metre sprint from Carney.

History shows that if any team can come back from behind it is Saints, particularly in knock out competitions, but it was not to be. They gave themselves hope with a 51 minute try from Darren Smith, but their other tries, from Cunningham, Newlove and Smith again came in the last 10 minutes and were mere consolation.

Team Sheets

Wigan - St Helens
No.
Player

Pos

No.
Player
1 Kris Radlinski Full Back 1 Paul Wellens
5 Brian Carney Wing 19 Ade Gardner
18 Martin Aspinwall Centre 3 Martin Gleeson
14 David Hodgson Centre 4 Paul Newlove
2 Brett Dallas Wing 2 Anthony Stewart
15 Sean O'Loughlin Stand Off 13 Paul Sculthorpe
7 Adrian Lam Scrum Half 7 Sean Long
30 Quentin Pongia Prop 10 Barry Ward
9 Terry Newton Hooker 9 Keiron Cunningham
10 Craig Smith Prop 18 Mark Edmondson
11 Mick Cassidy 2nd Row 32 Willie Talau
12 Danny Tickle 2nd Row 12 John Stankevitch
13 Andy Farrell L.Forward 16 Darren Smith
4 Paul Johnson Sub 6 Jason Hooper
8 Terry O'Connor Sub 11 Chris Joynt
20 Luke Robinson Sub 14 Mick Higham
23 Gareth Hock Sub 17 Mike Bennett

Score Sheet

Wigan Warriors 40 --- St Helens 24

Tries (7):
Danny Tickle
Adrian Lam 2
Mick Cassidy
Sean O'Loughlin
Brian Carney
Kris Radlinski

---

Tries (5):
Jason Hooper
Darren Smith 2
Keiron Cunningham
Paul Newlove

Goals:
Danny Tickle 4/4
Adrian Lam 1/2
Luke Robinson 1/1

--- Goals:
Sean Long 2/2

Scoring and Incident Pattern

05mins:05 Wigan 04 St Helens 00 Try: Danny Tickle
- Wigan 06 St Helens 00 Conversion: Danny Tickle (1/1)
08mins:11 Wigan 10 St Helens 00 Try: Adrian Lam
- Wigan 12 St Helens 00 Conversion: Danny Tickle (2/2)
17mins:08 Wigan 16 St Helens 00 Try: Mick Cassidy
- Wigan 18 St Helens 00 Conversion: Danny Tickle (3/3)
25mins:14 Wigan 18 St Helens 04 Try: Jason Hooper
- Wigan 18 St Helens 06 Conversion: Sean Long (1/1)
31mins:02 Wigan 22 St Helens 06 Try: Adrian Lam (2)
- Wigan 24 St Helens 06 Conversion: Adrian Lam (1/1)
34mins:23 Wigan 28 St Helens 06 Try: Sean O'Loughlin
- Wigan 28 St Helens 06 A.Lam Missed Conversion (1/2)
39mins:41 Wigan 32 St Helens 06 Try: Brian Carney
- Wigan 34 St Helens 06 Conversion: Luke Robinson (1/1)
Half Time Wigan Warriors 34 St Helens 06
51mins:12 Wigan 34 St Helens 10 Try: Darren Smith
- Wigan 34 St Helens 10 S.Long Missed Conversion (1/2)
60mins:27 Wigan 38 St Helens 10 Try: Kris Radlinski
- Wigan 40 St Helens 10 Conversion: Danny Tickle (4/4)
68mins:44 Wigan 40 St Helens 14 Try: Keiron Cunningham
- Wigan 40 St Helens 16 Conversion: Sean Long (2/3)
74mins:57 Wigan 40 St Helens 20 Try: Paul Newlove
- Wigan 40 St Helens 20 S.Long Missed Conversion (2/4)
79mins:30 Wigan 40 St Helens 24 Try: Darren Smith (2)
- Wigan 40 St Helens 24 S.Long Missed Conversion (2/5)
Full Time Wigan Warriors 40 St Helens 24

Video Highlights

Referee

Karl Kirkpatrick (Warrington)

Match Attendance

21,790

CherryandWhite.co.uk Man of the Match

Craig Smith

2003 Super League Play Offs - Week 2 Results

Friday 3rd October 2003
Eliminator: Wigan Warriors 40 St Helens 24 (21,790)

Saturday 4th October 2003
Qualifier: Bradford Bulls 30 Leeds Rhinos 14 (19,786)