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Challenge Cup Match Report: Wigan 26 Castleford 12
Posted by Bilko on June 26 2016 - 14:56

Wigan Warriors v Castleford Tigers - Labrokes Challenge Cup Quarter Final
Saturday 25th June 2016. Kick Off 5:30pm at DW Stadium

Match Report

In my 33 years on this earth, Wigan have only ever lost three Challenge Cup ties in Wigan (I don't count the game at Leigh last year). Those losses were against Castleford in 1983, Castleford in 1986 and Castleford in 2014. Granted the first two of those victories were when I was months old and three years old but given this record I kept my expectancy muted ahead of this one.

In that match two years ago Castleford won with a superb defensive display to keep Wigan down to four points. Ahead of this one I felt that if Cas were to repeat the feat that they would need to do it again with top draw defence.

My gut feeling though pre match was that Castleford wouldn't have that kind of effort in their locker and for that reason I was confident of Wigan victory. I mean Daryl Powell's side actually have Super League's worst defensive record and in the first half here it showed.

Wigan were excellent in the first half and it was off the back of a very high completion rate of 88%. Sam Tomkins then pulled the strings in creating the first try for Dan Sarginson down the right before scoring himself by stepping past poor defence by Grant Millington. In cup ties conversions are massive and Smith set a good tone with the first try being converted off the touchline, the second try was bang in front for 12-0.

That was after 14 minutes and for a spell after that the visitors had chances but Wigan's defence held firm and then Wigan came out of that with two more tries.

Josh Charnley at the double with two tries, the second of which saw him wrestling over from a metre out. Smith may have missed the second conversion but he hit the first off the touchline and that sent Wigan 22-0 up at the oranges.

A score like that should be game over but Wigan's second half display took that far too literally. The intensity fell away, as did the set completion, and they practically invited Castleford to launch a comeback.

Defence was still good though because it took Castleford 19 second half minutes to finally score with Luke Dorn being sent under the posts for 22-6.

Had Castleford got the next try it would have been really interesting but any potential of Wigan having to sweat over the line was extinguished with a try from Dom Manfredi on 65 minutes. I say try but the the reality was that it was never grounded in a million years and should never have been awarded. Video Referee Rob Hicks decided he "may have got a finger tip on it" and that was enough to stick with referee Chris Campbell's on field call. I think it was 99.9% no try and 0.1% a try and find it staggering that Hicks gave it. That call didn't decide this match but if that decision had decided a final it was be an absolute disgrace.

Smith missed the extras but at 26-6 the tie was now over with the clock defeating Castleford as much as the scoreboard. They did have the last say though with a try from Ben Crooks in the final minute but the job had been done by Wigan long before and they are once again just 80 minutes away from Wembley.

Team Sheets

- Wigan Position Castleford 1
1 Sam Tomkins Full Back Luke Dorn 1
5 Dom Manfredi

Right Wing

Joel Monaghan 5
4 Dan Sarginson Centre Ben Crooks 19
20 Oliver Gildart Centre Jake Webster 3
2 Josh Charnley Left Wing Denny Solomona 5
6 George Williams Stand Off Grant Millington 10
7 Matty Smith Scrum Half Luke Gale 7
17 Lee Mossop Prop Lee Jewitt 14
16 Sam Powell Hooker Paul McShane 15

Ben Flower


Larne Patrick

21 Ryan Sutton 2nd Row Junior Moors 17
25 Willie Isa 2nd Row Mike McMeekan 12

Sean O'Loughlin


Nathan Massey

11 Joel Tomkins Substitute Adam Milner 9
19 Taulima Tautai Substitute Oliver Holmes 11
26 Greg Burke Substitute Matt Cook 16
29 Joe Bretherton Substitute Danny Tickle 33
- Shaun Wane Coach Daryl Powell -

Score Sheet

Wigan Warriors 26


Castleford Tigers 12

Tries (5):
Dan Sarginson
Sam Tomkins
Josh Charnley 2
Dom Manfredi


Tries (2):
Luke Gale
Ben Crooks

Matty Smith 3/5
--- Goals:
Luke Gale 2/2

Scoring and Incident Pattern

05mins:07 Wigan 04 Castleford 00 Try: Dan Sarginson
Wigan 06 Castleford 00 Conversion: Matty Smith (1/1)
13mins:42 Wigan 10 Castleford 00 Try: Sam Tomkins
Wigan 12 Castleford 00 Conversion: Matty Smith (2/2)
28mins:46 Wigan 16 Castleford 00 Try: Josh Charnley
Wigan 18 Castleford 00 Conversion: Matty Smith (3/3)
34mins:15 Wigan 22 Castleford 00 Try: Josh Charnley (2)
Wigan 22 Castleford 00 Missed Conv: Matty Smith (3/4)
Half Time Wigan Warriors 22 Castleford Tigers 00
59mins:38 Wigan 22 Castleford 04

Try: Luke Gale

Wigan 22 Castleford 06 Conversion: Luke Gale (1/1)
65mins:37 Wigan 26 Castleford 06 Try: Dom Manfredi
Wigan 26 Castleford 06 Missed Conv: Matty Smith (3/5)
79mins:14 Wigan 26 Castleford 10

Try: Ben Crooks

Wigan 26 Castleford 12 Conversion: Luke Gale (2/2)
Full Time Wigan Warriors 26 Castleford Tigers 12


Chris Campbell

Match Attendance



Dry with Cool Breeze.

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