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Ex-Wigan Warriors duo Jackson Hastings and Oliver Gildart unable to inspire Wests to Round One win

Former Wigan duo Jackson Hastings and Oliver Gildart are both part of the new era at Wests Tigers as they look to return to the play-offs in 2022.

However, their season couldn’t have started with a more difficult fixture with last year’s Minor Premiers and one of the favourites taking on the Tigers in the shape of Melbourne Storm.

However, Wests got off to an ideal start with Gildart setting up Ken Maumalo for the opening try as Wests took a 4-0 lead. Luke Brooks failed to add the extras on what was a difficult night with the boot with some questioning whether Hastings should be the man kicking goals instead.

George Jennings soon equalised for the storm however but tries either side of halftime from David Nofoaluma and a second from Maumalo alongside a penalty goal from Brooks gave Wests a shock 14-4 lead.

Que the comeback from Melbourne who notched two tries either side of a Brooks goal to level the game at 16-16 with a Jahrome Hughes try particularly catching the eye.

Xavier Coates then crowned his debut with what would prove to be the winning try before a Reimis Smith score wrapped up the win for Melbourne condemning Hastings and Gildart to defeat on debut with Craig Bellamy claiming a 350th win as a coach.

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