A FANTASTIC night for Wigan saw the Warriors use their game in hand to go top of Super League in style with a 48-4 win over Widnes.
England winger Josh Charnley bagged five tries on his return from injury, two young stars in Connor Farrell and Callum Wright made their debuts and away from the action fans were delighted to see Joel Tomkins return to the club.
It took the champions just 39 seconds to swing into gear when Liam Farrell laid the marker down to his younger brother watching from the bench by snatching a Dan Sarginson pass to race from inside his own half to score.
A slight blip saw Paddy Flynn pull one back for the Vikings 10 minutes later but it was otherwise one way traffic as Charnley finished a mesmerising move started by Sarginson to bag his first.
The younger Farrell came off the bench for the injured John Bateman after 20 minutes and this was followed by skipper Sean O’Loughlin steamrolling in for a try after a nice pass from Joe Burgess.
The final 15 minutes of the half belonged to Charnley as he added two more to complete his hat-trick by the 35th minute and had time to squeeze a fourth out of another Sarginson pass before the hooter.
Wigan took 16 minutes to trouble the scoreboard in the second half and Charnley’s fifth rounded-off an effective passing move on the Widnes line.
Farrell added his second from a Burgess pass on the hour but his younger brother stole the England star’s thunder as an outrageous dummy saw the debutant score five minutes from time.
Don’t miss Thursday’s Evening Post for Phil Wilkinson’s full match report and exclusive interview with new signing Joel Tomkins.
Dan Sarginson; Josh Charnley, Darrell Goulding, Anthony Gelling, Joe Burgess; Sam Powell, Matty Smith; Ben Flower, Michael McIlorum, Scott Taylor, Liam Farrell, John Bateman; Sean O’Loughlin
Replacements: Gil Dudson, Connor Farrell, Jordan James, Callum Wright
Jack Owens; Patrick Ah Van, Danny Craven, Cameron Phelps, Paddy Flynn; Kevin Brown, Grant Gore; Paul Clough, Jon Clarke, Alex Gerrard, Danny Galea, Danny Tickle; Hep Cahill
Replacements: Willie Isa, Macgraff Leuluai, Dave Allen, Llyod White
Tries: Charnley 5, L Farrell 2, O’Loughlin, C Farrell
Goals: Smith 6