Wigan Warriors: Three talking points from the victory over Leigh Leopards as Bevan French shines at fullback
Abbas Miski and Jai Field both went over for braces, while Bevan French was influential throughout.
Matty Peet’s side have now won three games on the bounce heading into next week’s Good Friday Derby against St Helens at the DW Stadium.
Here are some of the talking points from the victory over Leigh:
An impressive attacking display
Wigan’s grit and determination has never been in question this season.
In every game they have worked incredibly hard, but have needed to grind out a few results.
In the early stages of the game against the Leopards, it looked as if that might be the case again, with the home side taking an early lead.
Nonetheless, the Warriors soon fought back to put in an impressive display.
They looked fluent in attack, with Leigh just unable to deal with them at times.
As the game went on, Adrian Lam’s side began to tire, which provided Wigan with even more space to play with, which they certainly did.
Peet’s changes proves beneficial for French and others
The Warriors made a number of alterations to their team for this game.
After switching things during the victory over Salford Red Devils last week, Peet decided to go down a similar route from the start.
Bevan French started at fullback, Kai Pearce-Paul was at centre, and Jai Field was in the halves, with Cade Cust dropping out through injury.
Liam Marshall didn’t feature either due to a foot problem, with Abbas Miski making his first appearance of the season.
Meanwhile, Willie Isa returned to the side for his 300th career game.
The advantages of some of the changes were clear to see.
French seems to thrive at fullback, as he just seems able to fully express himself.
This was evident with Wigan’s first try, as he dashed to the line after picking up the ball in a dangerous position.
Throughout the night, he constantly looked like a threat.
Field also seemed to benefit from being in the halves, with the 25-year-old having a real impact on the game.
Unfortunately he now looks set to miss the next few weeks through injury.
A true occasion
The Leopards continue to impress with their pre-match entertainment at Leigh Sports Village.
Local band The Lottery Winners were on ahead of kick off this week, and certainly impressed.
It’s positive to see Leigh investing so much into things like this, as it’s only positive for the game as a whole.
More people will be attracted to matches due to them being an event as well as a sport.
The Warriors do an equally good job with their use of Robin Park Arena with the fan zone and other similar events.
The fans certainly played their part too on Thursday night, with a few pantomime-esc jeers for a couple of players in both squads.
The two sides have only met on seven previous occasions in Super League, but by the looks of it, it will become a firm staple of the competition.
While it’ll never be the size of Wigan V Saints, this derby could be a really positive thing for the borough to have if it continues to grow.