Wigan booked their place against Warrington Wolves after a comfortable win over Castleford at the DW Stadium. Here’s our verdict…
The Tigers got the first half underway but it was the hosts that broke the deadlock after ten minutes. It all started from a risky high tackle from Luke Gale which gave Wigan the time and space to supply Thomas Leuluai a try on his 250th appearance for the Warriors.
Wigan held on to their lead for the majority of the first half, Castleford had the chances to level the scores but their handling errors denied them the opportunities. Sam Tomkins extended his team’s lead with a drop-goal just before the half-time whistle blew.
The leaders got the second half underway and extended their lead to 11 points Wigan move the ball excellently down the right and Tomkins found a gap and ran towards the line to score in the corner. However he missed the kick to give them the six-pointer.
After the hour-mark Tomkins lifted the deficit with a two-point penalty conversion after Adam Milner failed to clear the rook.
He does it again, Tomkins get a second drop-goal just before the final whistle to keep the clean-sheet and send his team to Old Trafford.
WHAT WE’VE LEARNED
Wigan defended superbly
Despite the lack of tries on the attacking front, Wigan’s defence kept Castleford in their place for the majority of the match.
They will need to take this positive when they go up against Warrington at the Grand Final.
Castleford played themselves
Despite Wigan’s masterclass, the Tigers didn’t help themselves either. They’ve conceded one too many penalties due to their handling and it has costed them opportunities.
It was a tough night to finish the season for Castleford.
Man Of The Match- Thomas Leuluai (Wigan Warriors)
Leuluai got the man-of-the-match for his contribution to scoring the first of two tries tonight.
He was involved in the Cherries’ defensive masterclass, denying Castleford once again in their quest for Super League glory.
Wigan Warriors – 14
Tries: Leuluai (11′), Tomkins (47′)
Goals: Tomkins (2/4)
Drop Goals: Tomkins (40′, 80′)
Castleford Tigers – 0
Drop Goals: n/a
Wigan Warriors: Tomkins, Manfredi, Gildart, Sarginson, Davies, Williams, Leuluai, Navarette, Powell, Flower, Greenwood, Bateman, O’Loughlin.
Interchanges: Clubb, Farrell, Sutton, Escare.
Castleford Tigers: Mata’utia, Clare, Wardle, Shenton, Eden, Roberts, Gale, Watts, McShane, Millington, Holmes, McMeeken, Massey.
Interchanges: Webster, Milner, Sene-Lafao, Clark.
Referee: Ben Thaler