Wigan Warriors 20-18 St Helens: Highlights, player ratings and talking points

Wigan Warriors took on St Helens in a rip-roaring, entertaining affair this afternoon at Elland Road.

Wigan were more than up for this one and raced into a 4-0 lead practically straight from the off as Liam Marshall finished expertly in the corner.

That soon became 8-0 when Cade Cust powered his way over before Liam Farrell scythed his way through some empty defence to send Wigan 14-0 up at the break.

A game of two halves it certainly was as Konrad Hurrell, Jonny Lomax and James Roby all crossed, and, with Tommy Makinson’s conversions, suddenly led 18-14.

Against the run of play, however, Marshall picked up a loose ball to run 80 metres and send Wigan back into the lead once more at 20-18.

And, that’s how the game ended as Saints just couldn’t breach the line once more.

Highlights

Liam Marshall’s opening try was a beauty of a finish.

Jai Field dislodging the ball from Konrad Hurrell when the Tongan powerhouse looked likely to score was phenomenal.

Bevan French and Jack Welsby going for a sprint race was a joy to watch.

James Roby winding the clock back like a spring chicken with a brilliant individual try.

Marshall sprinting 80 metres for a sensational score was pivotal.

Talking points

1. Lomax’s woe

Most of the build-up during the week focused on Jonny Lomax’s potential absence from the St Helens side, but he was declared fit by head coach Kristian Woolf. However, throughout the game, the halfback looked in pain with an incredibly heavy strapping on his bicep. Alternating between halfback and fullback, Lomax was stifled in the first-half, though he did impress in the second.

2.Wigan’s first-half wonders

Wigan’s first-half was faultless. It was probably the best half of rugby league from the Warriors all year. A 14-0 half-time lead was just desserts for their efforts and perhaps could have been even more – especially if Harry Smith had converted all of Wigan’s tries.

3. Saints substitutions do the trick

If eve there was a time for Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook and Agnatius Paasi to have the game of their lives off the bench it was here. The duo came on for Alex Walmsley and Matty Lees and boy were they utterly fantastic. They helped turn the tide of a game that was slowly drifting from their grasp.

Player ratings

Wigan Warriors

23 Jai Field – 8
5 Liam Marshall – 9
2 Jake Bibby – 8
4 Iain Thornley – 7
1 Bevan French – 7
6 Cade Cust – 8
16 Harry Smith – 9
8 Brad Singleton – 8
28 Brad O’Neill – 7
20 Liam Byrne – 7
12 Liam Farrell – 9
13 John Bateman – 8
14 Morgan Smithies – 8
Substitutes
10 Patrick Mago – 7
15 Kaide Ellis – 6
19 Ethan Havard – 7
22 Joe Shorrocks – 6

St Helens

1 Jack Welsby – 8
2 Tommy Makinson – 7
23 Konrad Hurrell – 8
4 Mark Percival – 7
21 Josh Simm – 6
22 Ben Davies – 6
6 Jonny Lomax – 7
8 Alex Walmsley – 7
9 James Roby – 8
10 Matty Lees – 7
11 Sione Mata’utia – 7
12 Joe Batchelor – 6
13 Morgan Knowles – 8
Substitutes
14 Joey Lussick – 7
15 Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook – 10
16 Curtis Sironen – 7
17 Agnatius Paasi – 10

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