Wigan 57 (24)
Tries: Charnley (2), Smith, Clubb, Farrell, Tomkins, Sarginson, Bowen, O’Loughlin, Burgess
Goals: Smith (8)
Drop Goals: Smith
Huddersfield 4 (0)
Wigan Warriors ran in 10 tries to produce a resounding 57-4 victory over Huddersfield Giants in the opening Super League qualifying play-off.
First half tries from Josh Charnley, Matty Smith, Tony Clubb and Liam Farrell had given the Warriors a 24-0 lead going into the break.
Huddersfield responded early in the 2nd half through Leroy Cudjoe’s try, but a further 6 2nd half scores as well as a late drop goal from smith means the Warriors progress to week 3 of the play-offs.
Wigan started off the brightest and were ahead after 4 minutes when Joe Wardle and Eorl Crabtree gave away a penalty after holding down Sean O’Loughlin at the play the ball. Matty Smith slotted over the penalty for an early 2-0 advantage.
The first try for the cherry and whites came on 21 minutes as Aaron Murphy was sucked in field in defence for Huddersfield leaving Josh Charnley open out wide who went over in the corner after receiving Matt Bowen’s pass.
Moments later Wigan were in for their 2nd after a brilliant individual try from Smith. The scrum half, who was named in the Super League dream team this week, broke the line 20 metres out, beating off the challenges of Shaun Lunt and Scott Grix before going over under the posts.
Five minutes later Smith was running the show again, drawing in a challenge from Michael Lawrence which created a gap in the Giants’ line. Tony Clubb seized the opportunity to make the break and ran 20 metres to go over for Wigan’s 3rd try.
The Warriors were running riot by this point, completely dominating and controlling the possession. Their final try of the first half came just 2 minutes later after Joe Burgess made a break out wide. The youngster found Liam Farrell on his inside, as the second-rower went over to give Wigan a 24-0 lead at the break.
If the Giants were to make a comeback it was paramount they began the 2nd period well, and they responded through a Leroy Cudjoe try 2 minutes after the break.
But Wigan responded to swing the game back in their control 5 minutes later. Another break from the influential Smith found Joel Tomkins who ran 20 metres and slid over the try line, despite the best efforts from Craig Kopczak to hold him up.
On the 50 minute mark another break out wide from Burgess found Dan Sarginson on his inside who went in under the posts.
Wigan were offering little respite to Huddersfield, and added to the Giants’ misery through a Matt Bowen try just minutes later. A break from Eddy Pettybourne 20 metres away from their own line passed to Burgess on the wing who used his pace to move the Warriors up the field. Bowen was free on his inside to take Wigan past the 40 point mark.
Josh Charnley then added his 2nd of the night 5 minutes later, shrugging off the challenges of Grix and Brett Ferres on the right wing to go over in the corner.
Sean O’Loughlin received a smart offload from Blake Green minutes later to go over for the 9th try, before a superb 100m effort from the outstanding Burgess saw the winger use his pace to turn defence into the Warriors 10th try of the night.
Matty Smith’s late drop goal did nothing but make the scoreline more unflattering for the Giants as Wigan finished the game 57-4 winners.
The Warriors now progress to the semi-finals of the play-offs in 2 weeks time and are just 80 minutes away from Old Trafford. Huddersfield need to pick themselves up off the ground over the next 7 days as they get a 2nd chance to reach the semi-finals next week.