Catalan Dragons 14 Wigan 36: Warriors maintain top spot courtesy of curious refereeing
16:10 GMT, 9 June 2012
Wigan maintained their lead at the top of the Stobart Super League with a 36-14 win against a rugged Catalan side.
However, the result was much closer than the scoreline suggests as time and time again the home side were on the wrong end of some baffling refereeing decisions.
The main contentious decision came just before half-time when Josh Charnley appeared to score a try despite his elbow being in touch. Despite a video referee being available to James Child, the referee opted to give the try without the assistance.
After last weekend's defeat at Salford, this was a much better Catalan performance and they took the lead early through a Scott Dureau penalty.
There are still signs that the home side are not at their best however, when – with Gil Dudson in the sin-bin for a late challenge on Dureau – Wigan managed to score two tries. Charnley converted one of them to give the Warriors a 10-2 lead.
The video referee was needed in the 18th minute when he awarded a penalty try to the Catalans after Michael McIlorum tackled Clint Greenshields just before the tryline without the ball as the full-back chased Setaimata Sa's kick through. Dureau added the conversion to reduce the arrears to 10-8
Just before the break Louis Anderson left the field with a shoulder injury, and down the right hand edge that he had been defending in Sam Tomkins set Charnley free to dive over for his controversial effort. Charnley failed to convert his effort as the half time hooter went.
Six minutes after the turnaround, Charnley did extend the Warriors lead with a penalty from in front of the posts, given for the markers not being square at the play the ball.
Wigan extended their lead further four minutes later with a superb try that involved Sean O'Loughlin, Jeff Lima, McIlorum and Brett Finch before the ball found its way to George Carmont to score his first of the afternoon. Again Charnley failed with the conversion.
On the hour the ball was sent to the Wigan left and Jack Hughes managed to offload to the supporting Carmont to score to the left of the posts. Charnley again missed the conversion attempt.
Dureau narrowed the deficit with a quick tap penalty that caught the Wigan defence napping as he raced in from 60 metres out to score under the posts. He quickly converted his own try to narrow the gap further to 10 points with 10 minutes remaining.
However, Wigan finished the stronger and late tries from Tomkins and Hughes extended their advantage. Tomkins took over the kicking duties from Charnley and converted both efforts.