Wigan Warriors 12 Huddersfield Giants 30

Wigan v Huddersfield - Epalahame Lauaki is halted
Wigan v Huddersfield - Epalahame Lauaki is halted

THREE second half strikes from Huddersfield acted as a massive leap towards the Giants finishing first in the sport’s top tier since 1932.

Brett Ferres, Scott Grix and Aaron Murphy all crossed in a one-way second half after the Warriors had started so brightly in front of an assembly of Wigan legends on the club’s Heritage Day.

Sam Tomkins was a late withdrawal from the squad with a back spasm - failing a fitness test late in the afternoon - and the telling absence of skipper Sean O’Loughlin was felt painfully in the second half.

The Warriors were on fire in the opening exchanges and wasted no time in finding their way over the line when Harrison Hansen crashed through a gap in the defence but video referee Richard Silverwood called held-up.

Not that it was any more than a minor inconvenience for Wigan as Blake Green sent the ball skyward for Josh Charnley to bat down and Sam Powell to open the scoring - only after the second consultation with the video in 30 seconds.

The Warriors’ defence finally cracked after 15 minutes when Scott Grix forced Charnley to make another one-on-one hit leaving him with no option but to leave his post.

And Brough kicked through to exploit the gap with Aaron Murphy willing to oblige with the points.

As the half-hour approached a simple but well-executed passing move in the middle of the field send Charnley on hurtling for the tryline after a nifty pass from Goulding put him through.

Blake Green then conceded a penalty on the Wigan line for not getting out of the way at the play the ball and the Giants halves combined to send Jason Chan in for a simple score.

Ferres put the Giants in front for the first time three minutes after the break from a suspect pass but the protests from the Wigan fans fell on deaf ears as the try was given.

The Warriors’ line was breached again after 58 minutes when Grix backed himself to win the race to his own kick and stretch the away side’s lead.

With 11 minutes to go Murphy added his second as he ploughed over tired tackle attempts and the game, and possibly a third League Leaders’ Shield in four years, were beyond the Warriors.

Wigan Warriors: Ryan Hampshire, Josh Charnley, Darrell Goulding, Iain Thornley, Pat Richards, Blake Green, Sam Powell, Lee Mossop, Michael McIlorum, Scott Taylor, Harrison Hansen, Liam Farrell, Chris Tuson

Replacements: Jack Hughes, Epalahame Lauaki, Logan Tomkins, Gil Dudson

Huddersfield Giants: Scott Grix, Jermaine McGillvary, Leroy Cudjoe, Joe Wardle, Aaron Murphy, Danny Brough, Luke Robinson, Eorl Crabtree, Shaun Lunt, Craig Kopczak, Brett Ferres, Michael Lawrence, Dale Ferguson

Replacements: David Faiumu, Larne Patrick, Jason Chan, Kyle Wood

Referee: James Child

Video Referee: Richard Silverwood

Attendance: 19620

Wigan Warriors:

Tries: Powell, Charnley

Goals: Richards 2

Huddersfield Giants:

Tries: Murphy 2, Chan, Ferres, Grix

Goals: Brough 5