Wigan led 24-12 after Jai Field, Kaide Ellis, Liam Farrell, Harry Smith crossed; Salford scored via King Vuniyayawa and Matt Costello; Red Devils came out all guns blazing in the second half and tries from Alex Gerrard, Ken Sio saw them level game at 24-24; Field then struck Wigan winner
Last Updated: 24/04/22 3:49pm
Jai Field scored a length-of-the-field try in the dying minutes as Wigan recorded a 30-24 Super League victory over Salford in a thrilling encounter at the DW Stadium.
In an entertaining first half that saw six tries scored, Wigan led 24-12 after Field, Kaide Ellis, Liam Farrell and Harry Smith crossed over.
Salford, who found themselves 6-0 down after just five minutes, hit back with two tries of their own through King Vuniyayawa and Matt Costello – but that just spurred Wigan on as they scored two tries in five minutes to take a nice lead at the break.
The Red Devils came out all guns blazing in the second half and tries from Alex Gerrard and an interception score from Ken Sio saw them level the game at 24-24.
Salford deserved more than they got, but they were hit late with another Field masterclass as he raced the length of the field to seal a hard-fought win after 78 minutes.
Wigan took the lead in the fifth minute with a superb try from Field. He collected a sublime flick pass from John Bateman and left Red Devils full-back Ryan Brierley in his wake to score the first try of the game as Smith added the conversion.
The visitors refused to lie down and – following an interception from Chris Atkin – they camped on Wigan’s line with three consecutive sets. They made their pressure count as Vuniyayawa barged his way over from close range and Brierley added the extras to level the scores.
Cade Cust then opted to kick on the second tackle after noticing the Salford defence out of position but Bevan French was unable to touch down.
Moments later the Warriors found themselves behind for the first time as Brierley used his pace to split their defensive line and offloaded for Costello to touch down under the posts before the former’s conversion.
A high shot on Ethan Havard and another fresh set gave Wigan the opportunity to hit back and they did just that. Hooker Brad O’Neill – who was in for the suspended Sam Powell – showed plenty of composure for a young man as he sent out a cut-out ball for Ellis to race onto and touch down. Smith converted to make it 12-12.
Wigan took the lead again just before the half-hour mark with a moment of magic from Cust. The half-back took on the Salford line, threw three dummies and turned the ball back inside for Farrell to race through a gap and cross over, while Smith’s conversion extended their advantage.
They then made it two tries in five minutes as Smith broke through some poor defending to score Wigan’s fourth before converting it to take his first-half tally to 12 points as they led 24-12 at half-time.
The home side then went from almost scoring at the start of the second half through French to conceding under their own posts with Gerrard collecting a neat kick from Brodie Croft. Brierley’s conversion saw them trail by six.
Salford were soon level when Sio intercepted a rare poor pass from Field to race 80 metres unopposed and Brierley converted to level the scores.
Wigan had chances to win the game with French spurning their best one as he dropped the ball after they created an overlap with Field, while Liam Marshall also dropped the ball with the line at his mercy.
Joe Shorrocks thought he had won it for Wigan when he crossed over, but the referee ruled it out for obstruction.
Croft had a field goal attempted blocked and Morgan Escare fell short with his before Wigan hit them with a late sucker punch.
Field collected Escare’s attempt and ran the length of the field untouched to score his second – which Smith converted – and seal the win for the Warriors.