Wigan 44 Castleford 6
Match report as Wigan Warriors Under-16s thrash Castleford Tigers Under-16s 44-6 at Robin Park Arena
Morgan Smithies, Sam Halsall and Ben Holcroft start for the Warriors
- Ethan Havard, Luke Dale, Ryan Forshaw (2), Umyla Hanley, Jack Kennedy, Harry Rushton and Tom O’Loughlin with Wigan’s tries
Wigan Warriors Under-16s put on an entertaining show as they thrashed Castleford Tigers Under-16s 44-6 in their opening game of the season at Robin Park Arena on Saturday afternoon.
The Cherry and Whites got off to a great start by scoring three tries in the opening 15 minutes from Ethan Havard, Luke Dale and Ryan Forshaw.
Castleford pulled one back only for it to be cancelled by Wigan half-back Forshaw on the brink of half-time and Wigan were 24-6 to the good at the break.
Steve McCormack’s side scored four unanswered tries in the second-half through Umyla Hanley, Jack Kennedy, Harry Rushton and Tom O’Loughlin which saw the home side run-out comfortable 44-6 winners.
Sean O’Loughlin’s little cousin Tom started at prop for the Warriors while Sam Halsall and Ben Holcroft started at full-back and centre respectively.
Wigan Scholarship coach Steve McCormack had the use of Ryan Woolfenden, Tom Johnston, Jack Bibby, Harry Rushton, Brad O’Neill, Ellis Longstaff and Umyla Hanley coming off the bench.
Jae Priest started at full-back for the Tigers while Ritchie Westwood and Brad Jinks were in the halves.
It took just three minutes for the opening try to be scored and it was from the Warriors. Front-rower Ethan Havard pounced onto a smart grubber over the line while winger Jack Kennedy successfully converted to Wigan 6-0 up.
Wigan were in again a couple of sets later as half-back Luke Dale looked to kick but instead decided to run with it and barged over from close. Kennedy added the conversion to put his side 12-0 in front.
It was all Wigan in the opening stages of the game and scrum-half Ryan Forshaw scampered through the Tigers defence to dive over. Kennedy added the extras and Wigan led 18-0.
Castleford were determined to get back into the game and they pulled one back in the 20th minute as hooker Tom Holroyd shipped it down the line to centre Brad Graham who scored in the corner. Jae Priest’s conversion attempt was successful but the visitors were still 18-6 behind.
After some positive attacking play, Forshaw got his second as the bounce from a last tackle kick fell into his arms and he touched down. Kennedy was on point with his conversion again and Wigan went into the interval 24-6 to the good.
HALF TIME: Wigan Warriors U16s 24–6 Castleford Tigers U16s
Wigan started the second-half strongly and a fine passive move saw winger Hanley finish nicely in the corner. The conversion was missed but Wigan were 28-6 ahead.
Kennedy capitalised on Castleford’s Jack Thompson failing to catch a high bomb midway through the second-half by sprinting onto the loose ball and cruising over. He converted his own try to put his side into a 34-6 lead.
The Cherry and Whites, who went the 2016 season unbeaten, scored two tries within the last ten minutes of the game.
Harry Rushton burst onto a flat ball to wrestle his way over from close range while O’Loughlin steamed his way through the Tigers defence to complete a dominant Wigan performance as they beat the Tigers 44-6 in the opening game of the season.
FULL TIME: Wigan Warriors U16s 44–6 Castleford Tigers U16s
Wigan Warriors U16s – 44
Tries: Havard, Dale, Forshaw 2, Hanley, Kennedy, Rushton, O’Loughlin
Goals: Kennedy 6/8
Castleford Tigers U16s – 6
Goals: Priest 1/1
Wigan Warriors U16s: 1. Sam Halsall; 2. Cian Tyrer, 3. Ben Holcroft, 4. Reece Hamlett, 5. Jack Kennedy; 6. Luke Dale, 7. Ryan Forshaw; 8. Ethan Havard, 9. Amir Bourouh, 10. Tom O’Loughlin; 11. Dan Clare, 12. Max Roberts; 13. Morgan Smithies.
Interchange: 14. Ryan Woolfenden, 15. Tom Johnston, 16. Jack Bibby, 17. Harry Rushton, 18. Brad O’Neill, 19. Ellis Longstaff, 20. Umyla Hanley.
Castleford Tigers U16s: 1. Jae Priest; 2. Jack Thompson, 3. Joe Burton, 4. Brad Graham, 5. Jacob Doyle; 6. Ritchie Westwood, 7. Brad Jinks; 8. Liam Slicker, 9. Tom Holroyd, 10. Said Jamal; 11. Lewis Peachey, 12. Callum Cameron; 13. Ben Dobson.
Interchange: 14. Bailey O’Connor, 18. Asa Rodgers, 20. Harry Jones, 16. Connor Hovell, 19. Kieran Purdy, 15. Taylor Cartwright, 17. Sam Hall.