The Super League Super Eights got underway with seven games to decide will take parts in the play-offs and grab the ultimate prize of a place at Old Trafford and the prestigious Grand Final. The TV cameras were at the DW Stadium where second placed Wigan Warriors were hosting third placed Castleford Tigers as both sides looked to cement their top four position in the game of the round. Both sides made a number of changes from their last outings with both coaches knowing that a win in this game would go a long way to defining the end to their respective seasons. While the top four is almost assured for both sides, finishing second and getting that home advantage in the play offs is crucial. It took just five minutes for Liam Marshall to open Wigan’s account when he dribbled a George Williams kick through before diving on it to score one-handed. Sam Tomkins hit the near upright with his conversion attempt. After a catalogue of errors from both sides Gabriel Hamlin scored his first ever Wigan try after shaking off two tacklers to go over under the sticks giving Tomkins a simple conversion for a 10-0 lead. On twenty-four Joe Wardle knocked on in the act of scoring, the Tigers best chance in a half where they had been dominated by the Cherry and Whites. Three minutes later Dan Sarginson grabbed Wigan’s third of the game finding a gap after taking a miss-out pass in a flowing right to left passing move. Morgan Escare, on for the injured Tomkins, missed the conversion attempt. Ryan Sutton made it eighteen-nil after Castleford spilled the high kick gifting possession back to Wigan. Sutton picked up a bobbling kick through to spin out of the tackle and ground by the uprights. Escare added the conversion for 20-0. The Warriors had totally dominated the half, the Tigers had little to answer the Wigan onslaught and on the occasions that they did have the ball in hand they couldn’t make any ground and on most occasions they gave it up far too easily. Castleford grabbed a lifeline three minutes after the break when Jake Trueman dipped the shoulder, threw a dummy, and went through the hole he created to ground. Jamie Ellis slid his conversion attempt across the front of the posts. After a high tackle from Mike McMeeken on Sam Powell, Escare kicked the penalty goal for 22-4. On fifty-one James Clare caught a high kick to the corner from Jamie Ellis to twist away from the Wigan winger and ground by the corner flag. Ellis kicked the touchline conversion to get the Tigers into double figures. On the hour mark the Tigers were back within six points when Paul McShane got his hand on a bouncing kick through to ground on the line by the right upright.. Ellis added the extras for 16-22, the game was well and truly back on, the Tigers back from the dead. On sixty-four Escare hit the crossbar with a drop goal attempt, relinquishing possession. Five minutes from time McMeeken was penalised for a high tackle and when referee Child awarded the penalty, Tomkins kicked the penalty goal to extend the lead to eight points and secure the two points for the Warriors. Mitchell Clark grabbed a late consolation on the final hooter when he collected a kick through and went fifteen metres to score under the uprights. Ellis added the conversion but the Tigers had lost by two points. It was a brave second half fightback by the Tigers but they gave themselves too much to do. In the final analysis the difference between the sides was down to a couple of penalties conceded by McMeeken for dubious looking high tackles. Wigan take the spoils and go three points clear of Castlefor to make them favourites for a home game in the play-offs. Warriors: Tomkins S (2G), Davies, Isa, Sarginson (T), Marshall (T), Williams, Leuluai, Navarrete, Powell, Flower, Greenwood, Bateman, Hamlin (T).  Subs: Escare (2G), Clubb, Sutton (T), Partington. Tigers: Eden, Gill, Wardle, Shenton, Clare (T), Ellis (3G), Trueman (T), Watts, McShane (T), Sene-Lefao, Holmes, McMeeken, Massey.  Subs: Webster, Moors, Milner, Clark (T). Referee: James Child. Half-Time: 20-0. Full-Time: 24-22. Attendance: .
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