Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Wire Triumph Over Wigan

Wigan Warriors fell to their first defeat since March in a hard fought game at Warrington which saw Wigan missing seven first team players due to injury.

Wigan started the better with a Sam Tomkins kick on the 5th tackle forcing a Wire drop-out but Wigan failed to convert it into the opening score and the conceding of a penalty in the midfield saw Warrington capitalise with Higham picking out Westwood who raced over to sent the home fans wild and Hodgson added the extras for a 6-0 lead.

Wigan looked for an instant reply and Smith's kick through found Riley who was caught in goal and meant another drop-out by Wire but yet again Wigan failed to convert it into a score. Warrington went over again on the back of a penalty but the try was chalked off by the video referee who deemed that Hodgson had failed to fully ground the ball and Wigan breathed a sigh of relief.

The relief was short as this time Warrington did score their second despite some controversy as Briers kick to the corner was close to being palmed by Richards but Monaghan snuck in to ground the ball or so it would seem as on review, it seemed clear that he had lost the ball before grounding but the try was awarded to much disdain by the travelling fans and despite a missed conversion Wire were 10-0 up.

Both sides pushed forward but it was Warrington the happier as the half time break came as they led 10-0, Wigan needed a good start to the second half and got it on the first attack with an exquisite pass by Smith finding Sam Tomkins who stretched to touchdown over the line in front of the travelling Warriors who went absolutely wild as Richards added the conversion to pull it back to 10-6.

Wigan were over again within seven minutes as great pressure and quick passes from right to left ripped open the Warrington defence and allowed Gelling to dive over for a well deserved try and Richards superb kick took Wigan into the lead at 10-12.

Wigan hearts sank in the 72nd minute as Atkins went over but thankfully on review he had lost the ball while under pressure from the Wigan defence but the heartbreak did come three minutes later as Warrington broke away through Riley down the left and his kick forward fooled the Wigan defence and allowed Higham to touchdown and with Hodgson's conversion it meant Warrington now led 16-12.

Wigan's youngsters had done amazingly well to comeback and lead but their chances of a famous win capitulated with three minutes remaining as Hill crashed over to send three sides of the HJ ecstatic and leave the Wiganers in the West stand ruing mistakes but proud of their team's performance against a better and more experienced side. Hodgson added the extras and Warrington had an 22-12 lead and held on for the win to end Wigan's 13 game winning run.

An amazing night despite the result as for the majority of the 80 minutes, I and the rest of the Wiganers in the West out sung all three sides of the Wire faithful and even when the score meant a loss the cheers and support continued long after the game was over. Obviously my prediction failed as I went for a Wigan win but on my debut away trip I was very proud of the young lads and hope they can return with a win on Friday.