Wakefield 32-16 Wigan: More misery for Warriors

Last Updated June 07 2018, 22:02Rugby League

Wigan endured more misery on the field after controversy off it as Wakefield inflicted a third consecutive comprehensive defeat on them with a 32-16 success at the Mobile Rocket Stadium.

Reeling from Joel Tomkins' off-field antics which earned the dual-code international a four-week ban and a £10,000 fine and a resounding exit from the Challenge Cup, the Warriors produced a limp display.

Winger Ben Jones-Bishop scored two of Wakefield's five tries as the Yorkshire side leapfrogged champions Leeds into sixth place in Super League while Wigan lost more ground on leaders St Helens.

Wigan were nilled on two of their three previous visits to Belle Vue and they looked to be heading the same way when they trailed 14-0 after 27 minutes.

They eventually ended a scoring drought of four minutes over three hours with Gabe Hamlin's first try in Super League but there was little else for the visiting fans to cheer.

Wigan coach Shaun Wane handed a debut to 20-year-old Craig Mullen following the late withdrawal of winger Liam Marshall due to illness and he emerged with credit after being constantly put under pressure.

The Warriors also had rookie forwards Callum Field and Hamlin on the bench after losing three first-choice front rowers to injury.

It was clear where Wakefield had the edge and starting props David Fifita and Anthony England, on the 200th appearance of his career, set a superb platform with a series of powerful runs in the first quarter.

That gave stand-off Jacob Miller the room to cause plenty of problems for the suspect Wigan defence.

Trinity opened the scoring on seven minutes when former Wigan half-back Ryan Hampshire and full-back Max Jowitt worked the ball out wide for Jones-Bishop to touch down at the corner for his first try.

Wigan made it hard for themselves when hooker Thomas Leuluai was sin-binned for the second successive week, this time for a high tackle on Justin Horo, and Wakefield immediately made the extra man count as centre Bill Tupou forced his way over for their second try midway through the first half.

Hampshire was wide with his first kick at goal but he converted Tupou's try and added two penalties to make it 14-0.

Wigan finally ended their scoring drought five minutes before half-time when former South Sydney Under-20s forward Hamlin took skipper Sean O'Loughlin's pass and displayed neat footwork to jink his way over.

Sam Tomkins added the conversion to reduce the deficit to eight points, which at least gave them a foothold in the game.

There was no way back, however, when Jones-Bishop picked off O'Loughlin's pass and sprinted 90 metres for his second try and left winger Tom Johnstone crossed on 57 minutes after Miller's grubber kick bounced back off defender Willie Isa.

Hampshire took his goal tally to five from seven attempts with a second penalty that made it 26-6 but the Warriors rallied in the final quarter and winger Tom Davies and substitute Morgan Escare grabbed consolation tries.

Wakefield then wrapped up the scoring when big substitute forward Pauli Pauli crashed over four minutes from the end and Hampshire kicked his sixth goal.

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