Wigan earned their first away Super League victory since 12th July 2014 as they beat bottom of the league Wakefield 22-40 at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium.
The game was a high scoring affair with Joe Burgess capturing his first ever Super League hat-trick. Dom Crosby, Matty Smith Dom Manfredi and Lee Mossop all got involved in the scoring spree.
Burgess said: “I’m happy to get my first hat-trick in Super League, Dom Manfredi has been getting them recently so it was nice for me to get one.”
As for the Wildcats Craig Hall opened the scoring whilst Danny Kirkmond’s try and Pita Godinet’s brace kept them close throughout the game.
Kirkmond said: “It’s been a tough few weeks the defeat against Warrington was the lowest point of the season but the win against Halifax gave us some confidence and we improved a lot today.”
Both sides had a man sent to the bin after a first half fight. Tim Smith went for the Wildcats whilst Sam Powell went for the Warriors. The game was a tough contest with Danny Kirke having to leave the field with a broken thumb adding to Wakefield’s injury problems.
Wigan have now won three games on the bounce in Super League however Coach Shaun Wane didn’t look happy on the sideline.
Wane said: “We are a lot better than we showed today, the performance just wasn’t acceptable especially our defence.”
However he added: “We have got the two points though and I commend the players for earning the win here at Wakefield which is a tough place to come.”
Wakefield coach James Webster said: “We are improving every week and with the situation here at Wakefield being as it is we just need to keep improving but we certainly won’t stop fighting.”
Surprisingly, it was Wakefield who broke the deadlock and after only 48 seconds. Smith went through the Wigan line before finding Hall who got to the line.
The home side failed to build on their early lead and Wigan punished them with three unanswered tries. Firstly Dom Crosby crashed over for the Warriors. This before Matty Smith stepped through the Wildcats line, Wakefield full back Hall shot out and completely missed Smith leaving him to finish with ease.
Burgess scored his first when Dan Sarginson created an overlap before giving him the ball. Burgess’ speed got him down the line and left full-back Hall flat on his feet, again. Kirkmond would soon score for the home team however to bring them back in touching distance after taking an offload from just ten metres out.
Each side had a player sent to the bin late in the first half, both Smith from Wakefield and Powell from Wigan were given yellow cards for punching. Both sides would score after the sin-bins.
Wigan’s Manfredi stepped through the defence out wide after good hands from Smith and Ryan Hampshire. Wakfield replied when Godinet dummied from hooker before wriggling through three Wigan defenders with only a minute left before the interval.
The second half began in a similarly hectic fashion when Sarginson again broke before offloading to winger Burgess who scored his second of the game in the corner. However Wigan’s free flowing Rugby cost them moments later when former Wildcat Taulima Tautai threw an outrageous offload just ten metres out from his own line. Godinet scooped the ball from the floor before giving it to winger Riley who scored the easiest try of his career.
As the game progressed the tempo and scoring slowed down. Another ten minutes passed before the Warriors went over again when second-rower Mossop crashed over barging two Wakefield players out of the way in the process.
Burgess would complete his first ever Super League hat-trick fifteen minutes from time as he was on the end of Williams’ looping ball. This settled the game with Wigan leaving the Rapid Solicitors Stadium 22-40 victors.
Next up for the Wakefield Wildcats is another tough encounter as they travel to St Helens whilst Wigan host Hull KR at the DW Stadium.