IN these pages last week, Gareth Hock said he didn’t think St Helens fans liked him very much.
No Gareth, they don’t. Not now.
But Wigan fans will long remember the way he tore into Saints to set the aggression and tempo of their fabulous derby triumph.
And when it mattered, when the game was hanging in the balance, it was Hock who cracked it open, with a brilliant off-load for Sam Tomkins’ try and then crossing himself to ensure there would be no late hiccup.
Let’s not forget St Helens had been in white-hot form going into the match, and Wigan were missing five front-line forwards.
Which only served to make the victory even more satisfying.
THE same people who say Sam Tomkins was wrong to celebrate his try are the same people who moan there aren’t any characters in sport any more.
Admittedly, emotion probably got the better of Gareth Hock when he arrowed the ball into the crowd, but I was surprised by the over-reaction. St Helens even took to Twitter to appeal for the ‘young fan’ who was hit to come forward!
Who said anyone was hit? Who said it was a young fan?
And as for Tomkins, his backwards jog across the deadball line was pure gold.
My only problem with try celebrations is we don’t see enough of them.
I look forward to the day when Sam emulates Henderson Gill’s ‘bit of a boogey’. Now that would upset the Saints fans!
THEY say luck evens itself out over the course of a season.
In which case Latics should be due an avalanche of decisions between now and May 13.
The latest two dodgy decisions cost them a chance of getting at least a deserved point at Chelsea. Roberto Martinez could not hide his anger after the game, claiming that his side had been ‘robbed’ by a ‘disgusting’ performance from assistant official Dave Bryan.
The Premier League responded by standing Bryan down from his scheduled midweek game, but the horse has long since bolted.
Of course, it’s far from the first time this year that Latics have been left with a feeling of injustice. They found themselves on the wrong side of bad decisions against Manchester United and Blackburn Rovers. Decisions we have to hope don’t prove too costly in the final reckoning.
FANS reacted quickly to pay Bradford Bulls’ tax bill for them.
I hope they have some money left to support Orrell resident Paul Sculthorpe (he used to play a bit, too) and Steve Prescott. They will run the Paris Marathon this weekend, then peddle and paddle their way to London over the next few days to run the London Marathon a week later to raise money for charity.
If you can, text PREK99 to 70070 with a donation of 1,2,3,5 or 10 pounds.
And on fund-raising, well done to the Latics fans who raised £18,000 in their walk to Bolton for the Emma Hoolin appeal. A sterling effort.