Humble Richards deflects praise

Wigan ace Pat Richards kicks a goal against Bradford Bulls
Wigan ace Pat Richards kicks a goal against Bradford Bulls
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PAT Richards was the reluctant hero yesterday after he progressed further up Wigan’s points-scoring charts.

The winger’s 16-point haul – from a try and six goals – in the 54-16 victory at Bradford saw him climb to third place in the club’s all-time list of scorers. But he was quick to deflect praise onto his team-mates for their slick performance in the 10-try mauling at Odsal.

“I’m just doing my job,” the 29-year-old said modestly. “I thought we played well as a team, everyone did their jobs and that’s why we got a performance.”

Richards, who has amassed 1,943 points since joining ahead of the 2006 campaign, now trails Jim Sullivan (4,883) and Andy Farrell (3,135).

“I knew about it, and just to be up there, mentioned in the same name as some great players is very humbling,” said Richards, who already holds Wigan’s record for most points in a league match (38).

“But I don’t really focus on records or things like that. They’re something I’ll look back on when I’m finished.”

Coach Shaun Wane was quick to salute his efforts, pointing out that Richards contributes much more to the team than just his points-scoring prowess. “I thought he was really impressive today,” Wane said. “He was one of our best players. Frano was a great player but the way Pat carries the ball back, he’s better than Frano.”

Wigan made a nervy start against Bradford for a three-try blitz inside seven minutes saw them storm into a 16-0 lead. The Bulls fought back with two tries but scores by Chris Tuson and Darrell Goulding sandwiching half-time killed the game off.

Darrell Goulding, Josh Charnley, Chris Tuson and Liam Farrell all finished with two tries each, with Richards and Gareth Hock providing the other touchdowns.

Wane reported no fresh injury concerns.

CURRENT Castleford and former Wigan coach Ian Millward was in mourning yesterday following the death of his son Robbie.