5. Wigan masterclass
St Helens 16-42 Wigan (Etihad Stadium, 2012)
In 2012 Wigan and Saints came together with many predicting another close game between the two arch rivals, but it turned out to be the total opposite. In 25 first half minutes the Warriors produced some scintillating rugby, racing away into a 26-0 lead as they scored some world class tries. Sam Tomkins, Gareth Hock and Josh Charnley all went over before Tomkins produced a moment of pure genius as nobody laid a hand on him in a 60 metre dash to the line. Captain Sean O’Loughlin then scored to put the game beyond doubt with just over 20 minutes played, an incredible achievement against any team, let alone St Helens. The remainder of the match included a 52nd minute mass brawl with Saints reduced to 12 men and Wigan 11 by referee Ben Thaler. Despite that it was the opening quarter that deservedly got the headlines with Wigan producing some faultless rugby which will live long in the memory.
4. “He has support from Adrian Morley!”
Warrington 48-22 St Helens (Etihad Stadium, 2013)
This was a real Magic moment as despite the game already been won when Adrian Morley scored, it showed us how well liked and respected he was by his then Warrington teammates. With the Wolves leading Saints 42-22 and less than a minute left on the clock, Micky Higham took advantage of the tired opposing defence as he broke through a gap before handing on to Morley 40 metres out, the veteran prop then rolled back the years as he bolted over, evading all the chasing defenders to score. The try was special but it was the celebration afterwards that made this moment so good as every single Warrington player on the pitch rushed over to celebrate with him in a mass pile on. Morley then finally emerged from underneath all the bodies with a beaming smile on his face in what was his first game for four months having suffered a bicep tear in the third game of the season.
3. Chris Green wins the derby for FC
Hull FC 22-16 Hull KR (Etihad Stadium, 2013)
This was very much a Magic moment for the fans of Hull FC as an error from video referee Steve Ganson gifted them victory over their city rivals at the Etihad Stadium. With the score at 16-16 with three minutes left, the black and whites began to chance their arm as hooker Danny Houghton bombed a kick down the pitch. Rovers full-back Greg Eden made the fatal mistake of letting it bounce not once, but twice and Chris Green came out of nowhere to pluck the ball out of the air to win it for FC. Referee Ben Thaler handed it up to the video referee Steve Ganson and the replay clearly showed that Green was standing in front of Houghton as he kicked the ball. Incredibly, though, the try was awarded. Everyone else in the ground watched on in disbelief and it quickly became apparent that Ganson had tracked the wrong man and mistakenly given the try. The RFL issued a statement after the game apologising to Hull KR and admitting Steve Ganson had made an error, little consolation for the red and whites!
2. David Hodgson wins the derby for KR
Hull KR 32-30 Hull FC (Etihad Stadium, 2012)
In 2012 there was more last minute drama in the Hull derby as, with Rovers trailing 30-28 and penned inside their own half, winger David Hodgson produced a moment of individual brilliance to win it for KR. Jamie Jones-Buchanan caught up with him to talk about the try.
“We needed a last minute try and I got the opportunity to run 70 metres down the sideline to score and win the game, pretty easy,” Hodgson laughed. “I still get fans talking about it today, saying it was the best try they have ever seen in a derby game, but I think it was just the stage that it was set on and with it being a derby. It was a terrific feeling, all the fans were going mad at the time and it was a great game to be a part of.”
1. Jordan Tansey’s offside try
Bradford Bulls 38-42 Leeds Rhinos (Millennium Stadium 2007)
The biggest and most controversial moment in Magic Weekend history came at the first staging of the event in 2007. With Bradford leading 38-36 and one minute remaining on the clock, Leeds were wrongly awarded a penalty for offside and Kevin Sinfield unsurprisingly chose to go for goal from 47 metres out hoping to grab his side a draw. The Rhinos captain drove the kick towards the posts only for it to rebound off the angle and then bounce up into the hands of the chasing Jordan Tansey, he then plucked the ball out of the air and dived over between the posts. Referee Steve Ganson gave the try without any hesitation of going to the screen to check, a decision that will never be forgotten as replays showed Tansey to be at least three yards offside.
The try is brought up every year at the Magic Weekend and we caught up with Tansey who gave us his recollection. “If I’m being honest, I didn’t realise I was offside until I saw the replay,” he explained. “I just set off running as quickly as I could, hoping for something unlikely to happen. The next thing I knew I saw the ball come back off the post, it bounced up and I plucked it out of the air just before Lesley Vainikolo and dived over the line. I definitely got the ball down and then the whole team jumped on me, it was a great feeling and it’s up there with the most memorable moments of my career.”
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