Match Report: Wigan Warriors 29-2 Hull FC

Match Report: Wigan Warriors 29-2 Hull FC

The match report from Hull FC’s play-off semi-final with Wigan Warriors

Match Report News

Hull FC’s hopes of reaching a first Grand Final since 2006 were dashed by Wigan Warriors, who ran out 29-2 victors in a bone-crunching semi-final at the DW Stadium.

Despite taking an early lead through Marc Sneyd’s penalty, the Warriors took a 13-2 lead into the break thanks to tries from Joe Burgess and Harry Smith.

Zak Hardaker scored an early second half try, before late tries from Jake Bibby and Bevan French sealed the win, taking the semi-final tie too far from Hull’s clutches.

Team News

Andy Last was afforded the luxury of naming an unchanged 17-man matchday squad for the first time in 2020, paying credit to his backroom staff to keep a clean bill of health heading into the business end of the season.

Wigan were without standout hooker Sam Powell and winger Dom Manfredi, so reigning Steve Prescott Man of Steel Jackson Hastings filled the void at dummy half, with Jake Bibby moving to wing.

After announcing his retirement at the end of the season, Sean O’Loughlin came off the bench to make his final DW Stadium appearance.

The Match

It was advantage to Hull FC after eleven minutes thanks to a Marc Sneyd penalty goal following a ruck infringement at Andre Savelio’s play the ball.

Hull looked to have scored their first try of the game after a Bevan French error, but a video referee referral showed Josh Griffin had obstructed a Wigan player before Bureta Faraimo grounded the ball.

Wigan posted their first points of the game with thirteen minutes remaining until half-time. Quick hands from the Warriors saw Burgess score in the left corner. Hardaker added the extras.

The hosts extended their lead on the home straight to half-time. Smart play from Smith opened up space down the shortside and the young halfback was on hand to pick up a grubber kick and slide over the whitewash. Hardaker kicked the conversion to make it 12-2.

With the final play of the half, Smith kept the scoreboard ticking with a drop goal from 20 metres out.

HALF-TIME: Wigan Warriors 13-2 Hull FC

Wigan started the second half exactly how they hoped. Just four and a half minutes after the restart, Hardaker made a mercurial clean break and raced 40 metres to score under the sticks. He converted his own try to make it 19-2.

The Black & Whites were given a huge chance to get back into the game when Sneyd kicked through for Griffin inside his own half. The centre found Sneyd supporting on the inside, but the scrum-half couldn’t evade the challenges of some desperate defenders.

Despite failing to capitalise on a guilt-edge opportunity moments earlier, Hull looked to have given themselves a slim chance of mounting a comeback with just under ten minutes remaining. As Ratu Naulago contested a kick, the ball came loose and Andre Savelio supplied Houghton, but the video referee showed an error in the build up and the try was disallowed.

Three consecutive penalties against the Black & Whites proved damaging for Andy Last’s side, when a shift play and some nice Wigan hands put Bibby away in the right corner. Hardaker couldn’t maintain his 100% record from the kicking tee.

In the closing stages, the hosts rubbed salt into Hull’s wounds when the elusive French provided a supporting run to score under the sticks. The hooter sounded as Hardaker slotted over two more points.

FULL-TIME: Wigan Warriors 29-2 Hull FC

Squads & Scorers

Hull: Jake Connor, Ratu Naulago, Mahe Fonua, Josh Griffin, Bureta Faraimo, Carlos Tuimavave, Marc Sneyd, Scott Taylor, Jordan Johnstone, Josh Bowden, Manu Ma’u, Andre Savelio, Joe Cator

Hull Interchanges: Brad Fash, Danny Houghton, Ligi Sao, Chris Satae

Hull Goals: Sneyd (1/1)

Wigan: Bevan French, Joe Burgess, Oliver Gildart, Zak Hardaker, Jake Bibby, Harry Smith, Tommy Leuluai, Joe Bullock, Jackson Hastings, Brad Singleton, Liam Farrell, Willie Isa, Oliver Partington

Wigan Interchanges: Tony Clubb, Ben Flower, Sean O’Loughlin, Morgan Smithies

Wigan Tries: Burgess, Hastings, Hardaker, Bibby, French

Wigan Goals: Hardaker (4/5), Smith (DG)