Leigh 50 Wigan 10
Match report from Michael Mcilorum’s testimonial as Wigan lose out to Leigh
Warriors lead early on through Tommy Leuluai and Oliver Gildart
- Losing 12-10 at half-time Wigan ring the changes but concede six second-half tries
A Cory Paterson hat-trick and two tries from Ben Crooks saw Leigh Centurions run out 50-10 winners in Michael Mcilorum’s testimonial game at Leigh Sports Village.
The home side led early on after a 90-metre effort from Ben Crooks. Wigan soon hit back with a double through Tommy Leuluai and Oliver Gildart to lead 10-6 but Leigh went in at half-time 12-10 to the good after Cory Paterson’s 26th minute try.
Wigan rang the changes in the second half giving experience to many first year players and never got going as the Centurions ran in seven tries to take the win.
Wigan named new signings Morgan Escaré and Romain Navarrete in a 21-man squad that also included the returning Tommy Leuluai.
Ahead of their return to Super League the Centurions gave a first run out to eight new recruits including former Warrior Ryan Hampshire.
Michael Mcilorum led the teams out for his testimonial game, the Wigan fans forced to wait a little longer to see him back out playing following injury.
Wigan started well and forced a drop-out early on but from the resulting set came up with an error near the Leigh line only for Ben Crooks to collect and race 90-metres to score. Reynolds goaled and the home side led 6-0 inside five minutes.
Tommy Leuluai, making his first appearance since re-signing from New Zealand Warriors, looked spritely and he collected his own grubber kick to score Wigan’s first of the game.
The Warriors were ahead just two minutes later when George Williams bouncing kick found Liam Marshall who raced clear and passed inside to Oliver Gildart to score. Morgan Escaré converted the first but wide with the second, Leigh 6-10 Wigan after 13 minutes.
The game evened out as the half went on with Leigh hitting back in the 26th minute when after a couple of sets in the Wigan half Cory Paterson danced his way over. Reynolds’ goal giving the home side a 12-10 advantage.
Leigh had the better of it as the game neared half-time, Wigan working well in defence to keep them out with Tommy Leuluai coming up with a trademark tackle on Ryan Hampshire that was met with great delight from the large from the following Wigan contingent.
HALF TIME: Leigh Centurions 12–10 Wigan Warriors
Wigan mixed it up in the second half with Jake Shorrocks and Josh Woods on in the halves replacing Tommy Leuluai and George Williams with many younger squad players also getting a run out.
Leigh extended their lead six minutes into the half when numbers down the right side allowed Ben Crooks to bag his second. Reynolds’ third successful conversion making it 18-10.
Six minutes later and Leigh were in again, following a mazy run by James Clare they forced their way over through Danny Tickle.
As the clock neared the hour-mark Leigh scored their fifth try of the game as Jamie Acton latched onto a Ben Reynolds kick. The latter converted and Leigh led 30-10.
Without touching the ball Wigan were behind their own sticks again as Cory Paterson scored his second of the game to take the score to 36-10.
Leigh were well on top and taking full advantage down Wigan’s left side with James Clare the next beneficiary as he walked in at the corner, Reynolds just wide with the conversion attempt, 40-10 now the score.
Reynolds made up for his missed conversion moments later when he finished off a 50-metre move to edge Leigh further in front at 46-10.
Wigan rallied late-on forcing back-to-back drop-outs but were unable to force their way over with Leigh having the final say as Paterson finished acrobatically in the corner to complete the scoring.
FULL TIME: Leigh Centurions 50-10 Wigan Warriors
Leigh Centurions - 50
Tries: Crooks 2, Paterson 3, Tickle, Acton, Clare, Reynolds
Goals Reynolds 7/9
Wigan Warriors - 10
Tries: Leuluai, Gildart
Goals: Escaré 1/2
Leigh Centurions 19. Ryan Hampshire, 2. Adam Higson, 3. Ben Crooks, 1. Mitch Brown, 5. Matty Dawson, 20. Ben Reynolds, 7. Josh Drinkwater, 8. Gareth Hock, 21. Liam Hood, 16. Antoni Maria, 11. Cory Paterson, 12 Glenn Stewart, 13. Harrison Hansen
Interchange: 14. Eloi Pelissier, 22. James Green, 24. Jamie Acton, 23. Sam Hopkins, 18. Gregg McNally, 17. Atelea Vea, 15. Danny Tickle, 28. James Clare
Wigan Warriors 22. Morgan Escaré, 36. Tom Davies, 3. Anthony Gelling, 4. Oliver Gildart, 35. Liam Marshall, 6. George Williams, 7. Thomas Leuluai, 19. Ryan Sutton, 16. Sam Powell, 8. Frank-Paul Nuuausala, 27. Connor Farrell, 31. Macauley Davies, 13. Sean O’Loughlin
Interchange: 25. Jake Shorrocks, 21. Lewis Tierney, 26. Romain Navarrete, 37. Callum Field, 24. Joe Bretherton, 33. Josh Ganson, 32. Liam Forsyth, 39. Josh Woods
Referee – Gareth Hewer