MATTY Bowen says Wigan owed the fans a performance at the Magic Weekend following a horror two weeks.
And the Australian full-back was delighted to deliver, with a two-try display which helped the Warriors beat Leeds 27-12 in Saturday’s headlining game in Newcastle.
Everyone was embarrassed about how we performed in France, we knew we had to turn it around, and we did thatMatty Bowen
Shaun Wane’s outfit were under pressure heading into the contest after being dumped out of the Challenge Cup by Hull KR and then suffering a 56-12 hammering by Catalans - the fourth heaviest loss in the club’s proud history.
But they roared back to life to claim a hugely-impressive victory against the Super League pace-setters – a win described by livewire Bowen as one of his best in a Wigan shirt.
He said: “This was definitely up there. Last year we got the win against them when we had a heap of injuries, and it was good to get the win again – especially after the two weeks we’ve had.
“They’re always tough games against Leeds, and this was no different.
“Everyone was embarrassed about how we performed in France, we knew we had to turn it around, and we did that. I thought our forwards were great, they really dug deep.
“It’s great to be able to send the Wigan fans away with a good win.”
Bowen’s first try (inset) – from long-range – put Wigan on course for victory in front of more than 40,000 fans.
“I was confident of getting to the line... I was just hoping there was no one faster chasing,” smiled the former Australia international.
“It’s always nice to score tries, but even better to get the wins.”
Bowen says the players were given extra motivation to win from the fact it was Micky McIlorum’s 200th appearance for the club.
“We spoke about it, and all the boys wanted to get the win for him,” added the 33-year-old, who is leaving the club at the end of the year.
“He’s a true competitor – one of those guys you don’t want to play against.”