It was a game which was contested pretty much toe-to-toe, Catalans always struggled to get into the game and Wakefield took full advantage.
In a game where the forward packs of both teams meant the most, it was a battle of the middles with the likes of David Fifita and Anthony England for Trinity and for the Dragons, Casty and former Wakefield man, Simon. It seemed former Huddersfield scrum half, Danny Brough, was taming the Dragons and controlling the game well on his 500th career appearance. On the other hand, Catalans coach Steve McNamara had Sam Tomkins at the back, whom he could trust.
With Jacob Miller and Brough in the halves, Wakefield were creating some good plays. Fullback Ryan Hampshire, has found his home at Wakefield and he was the man who helped Trinity open the scoring in the 15th minute with Tom Johnstone scoring with a tremendous acrobatic effort as he usually does.
Just short of four minutes later, Catalans replied. A couple of broken tackles, David Mead was away, he passed the ball wide to Samisoni Langi who ran in to close the gap.
On the half hour mark, Catalans edged themselves 8-6 ahead through a penalty kick. It then began to open up from the next set. Two minutes after Tomkins put Catalans ahead, Wakefield prop Fifita went over and after a look upstairs, the try was given and with the kick, Wakefield were back in front, 12-8. After two kicks and another Trinity try from James Batchelor a few minutes before half time, Wakefield saw themselves 20-8 up.
In the second forty, there was only one try. With the score finishing 22-12, Wakefield only needed a penalty kick from Danny Brough to secure their first two points of the season. Catalans did go over with Tongan international Langi scoring his second, his first brace ever as a professional.
There were a few talking points in the game nevertheless. Keegan Hirst was first to go to the sin bin in the 45th minute, for a high tackle on Jason Baitieri. Then, just over twenty minutes later in the match, Baitieri himself was sent to the bin for a silly challenge, pushing into the back of Arona. Arona was also sent to the bin with nine minutes remaining.
Wakefield’s discipline is a potential concern
With two players going to the bin for Trinity, it wasn’t rightful stuff for Chris Chester. Something to think about as I am sure the disciplinary panel will come calling this week coming.
Catalans, work to do?
With the spine of the team in a bit of disarray after a below average performance, Steve McNamara’s reigning Challenge Cup squad isn’t as rosy as first thought. Maybe he made too many signings and it may take a while to find out where they all fit into the puzzle?
Wakefield’s spine strong
With Hampshire at 1, Miller 6, Brough 7 and Wood 9, Wakefield’s spine looks to be settled. They played some creative rugby in the circumstances of a scrappy affair. Hampshire links up well with left winger, Johnstone and the halfback partnership seems to be working well in a game where Wakefield got their first victory of the season.
Attendances still on the slide
We all know and acknowledge the fact Wakefield do not have some of the luxuries clubs like Warrington, Leeds and Wigan have, although the attendance of just over four thousand last night could have been a bit higher.
Wakefield Trinity 22
Tries: Johnstone (1), Fifita (1), Brough (1), Batchelor (1)
Goals: Brough (4)
Drop Goals: n/a
Catalans Dragons 12
Tries: Langi (2)
Goals: Tomkins (2), Gigot (1)
Drop Goals: n/a
Wakefield Trinity: Hampshire, Johnstone, Tupou, Lyne, Jones-Bishop, Miller, Brough, Fifita, Wood, England, Ashurst, Batchelor, Arona.
Interchanges: Horo, Kopczak, Hirst, King.
Catalans Dragons: Tomkins, Tierney, Langi, Williame, Mead, Gigot, Smith, Casty, McIlorum, Moa, Edwards, Whitley, Simon.
Interchanges: Garcia, Goudemand, Maria, Baitieri.