Wigan end Rams' cup dream

Wigan end Rams' cup dream

DEWSBURY RAMS were dumped out of the Challenge Cup losing 54-4 having failed to deal with Wigan’s rampant Josh Charnley and subsequently missing out on the chance to battle it out with Castleford in the last eight.

Wigan star Charnley scored 22 points in his side’s dominant performance and Shaun Wane’s men ran in ten tries in total, including five in a stunning 20-minute spell at the start of the game, to race to their biggest margin of victory in 2016.

Charnley bagged his brace inside the first 15 minutes and kicked seven goals from eight attempts, while John Bateman and Oliver Gildart also got over twice.

Both Dom Manfredi and Sean O’Loughlin returned to the side, while Dom Crosby was also back after a spell on the sidelines as Wane fielded his strongest available team against the injury-hit Rams.

In a blistering spell, Charnley crossed two minutes in from O’Loughlin’s bullet pass and, three minutes later, he unselfishly sent George Williams over on his return to the starting line-up for the first time in two months.

Matty Smith went wide with both conversion attempts.

After a blockbuster start from the visitors, Dewsbury regained their composure and repeat sets on Wigan’s line threatened a score, but the visiting defence held firm.

Meanwhile Wigan’s forwards were relishing the shorter than usual pitch throughout the match eating up the metres in midfield, Charnley darting over for his second from O’Loughlin’s dummy-half pass as a result.

The winger also took over the goal-kicking duties but was unable to improve, keeping it 12-0.

Undeterred, the fervent Rams looked to hit back and debutant winger Donald Kudangirana was only denied a memorable Challenge Cup try by a superb Charnley tackle.

But normal service resumed soon after as Wigan, firmly back on top, struck two tries in the next eight minutes.

Sam Powell rumbled upfield to set up Gildart for a damaging run, which saw him dance over the line from 20 metres out, showing a fine balance of pace and agility to touch down beneath the posts. Charnley notched the simple conversion.

Dan Sarginson then piled over, making it 24-0. At this stage, the rampant Warriors were averaging more than a point a minute.

England captain O’Loughlin, who had more than made his mark, was take off as part of a triple substitution soon after and the rest of the first half become more of a level affair, with Wigan hitting two more tries, in response to the Rams’ first.

Former Super League star Sykes skipped and stepped his way over from five metres out soon before half-time - taking advantage of a John Bateman slip to streak over. He went wide with his conversion attempt.

Bateman, perhaps fuelled by his earlier error, atoned in style within minutes, helping himself to two tries.

His first came from a slick exchange of passes which saw him stride over, and his second came courtesy of sheer brute force against a tiring Dewsbury defence.

Charnley added both goals and they led 36-4 at the break.

Sadly for Morrison’s Dewsbury the interval didn’t halt Wigan’s momentum and the way side took just 72 seconds to extend that lead in the second period as Ryan Sutton trundled over for his first try of 2016.

Lewis Tierney, who recently lost his fullback place to Dan Sarginson, was introduced from the bench and did his first team opportunities no harm in a composed final quarter.

On from the bench, he was quickly into the action with a scorching run which sent Gildart over from long-range, Charnley’s extras making it 48-4 to the visitors. That was before Gildart went over himself to round off the scoring.

The Rams emerged with credit in the closing stages, keeping the Warriors scoreless, but it is Shaun Wanes men who now sit just two wins away from Wembley.

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