Hull overrun as Radlinski fires Wigan

Wigan 28 Hull 6
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The Independent Online

Just as Wigan seemed to have timed their run with a precision worthy of potential champions, events elsewhere robbed them of the second place in the Super League they thought they had earned.

Wigan did all that could have been asked of them against a lacklustre Hull side, only for Leeds to launch an astonishing fightback at Headingley to keep their noses in front with one round of games to go before the play-offs. Leeds were 20-0 down after 58 minutes against St Helens but ran out 30-20 winners.

That might be frustrating for Wigan, but they would not swap their situation with Hull, who are now in danger of missing out on the top six altogether.

Wigan made what could have been a disconcerting start, with Terry Newton sent to the sinbin after only two minutes for holding down Richie Barnett. They soon got over it, scoring the first of their three first-half tries - all beautifully constructed and all involving Kris Radlinski - while Barnett was still off the field.

Mick Cassidy, standing in at dummy-half made the initial inroads, Luke Robinson carried it on and Radlinski was there to send David Hodgson over. After 18 minutes, Radlinski broke through again, released Dallas with Hodgson again appearing in support to finish the move.

Just before the half-hour Robinson was again involved and Radlinski's reverse pass took a deflection off a Hull defender for Mark Smith to pick up the pieces and send Danny Tickle over, with Tickle also adding his third goal.

Hull were making no inroads into Wigan's defence but they at least got some points immediately before half-time when one of a series of skirmishes led to a penalty for Paul Cooke.

Robinson kicked a penalty early in the second half after he had been hit high on another of his darting runs.

The best that could be said for Hull was that they tightened up their defence, but they were breached again after 64 minutes when Gareth Hock ran on to Andy Farrell's pass for the fourth try. Tickle converted and added a penalty when Chris Chester was sent to the sinbin for obstruction. Hull got a meaningless consolation when Kirk Yeaman squeezed in at the corner.

Wigan: Radlinski; Dallas, Aspinwall, Hodgson, Carney; O'Loughlin, Robinson; C Smith, Newton, Pongia, Cassidy, Tickle, Farrell. Substitutes used: Johnson, O'Connor, M Smith, Hock.

Hull: Horne; Best, Barnett, Yeaman, Wilkinson; Cooke, J Smith; Greenhill, Treister, King, McMenemy, Ryan, Chester. Substitutes used: Dowes, Jowitt, Logan, Lupton.

Referee: S Ganson.