KIRK Dixon struck 11 minutes before time to end Wigan’s 28-year unbeaten home record in the Challenge Cup.
In a classic Cup battle the low scoreline gave no indication of the tension throughout as the sides battered each other in a clash littered with controversy.
With Ben Flower, Liam Farrell, Mike McIlorum and Dan Sarginson back in the Warriors’ ranks, the returning first choice stars couldn’t prevent a second defeat to the Tigers of 2014.
Not since a 10-2 defeat to Castleford in the 1986 quarter-final had Wigan lost a home Cup tie but when Dixon took a Michael Shenton pass 30 metres out and slid over the line with the score 6-4 in Castleford’s favour, it was clear a new name would be inscribed on the Cup this year.
James Clares’ try on the half hour gave Cas a 6-0 half-time lead after two Tigers tries were chalked off by the video referee and Wigan were unable to respond before the break.
After holding siege in the Castleford half for much of the second period, Liam Farrell barged over to give the holders hope but for the rest of the game the Tigers’ defence was watertight.
With the clock running down, Lee Jewitt crashed over from close range to send the away fans into raptures and Warriors out of the Cup.
Read the full report and reaction in Monday’s Evening Post
Wigan Warriors: Matty Bowen; Dom Manfredi, Dan Sarginson, Anthony Gelling, Joe Burgess; Geroge Williams, Matty Smith; Ben Flower, Michael McIlorum, Gil Dudson; Liam Farrell, John Bateman; Sean O’Loughlin
Replacements: Jack Hughes, Dom Crosby, Ryan Hampshire, Ryan Sutton
Castleford Tigers: Luke Dorn; Kirk Dixon, Michael Shenton, Jake Webster, James Clare; Mark Sneyd, Liam Finn; Andy Lynch, Daryl Clark, Craig Huby; Oliver Holmes, Weller Hauraki; Lee Jewitt
Replacements: Grant Millington, Frankie Mariano, Scott Wheeldon, Jamie Ellis
Tries: Clare, Dixon, Jewitt
Goals: Sneyd 2