Wakefield Trinity 0 Catalans Dragons 58: Sam Tomkins takes centre stage as woeful Wakefield suffer rout

YOU can imagine the realiasation Israel Folau was not playing might have given Wakefield Trinity added belief this afternoon.

Wakefield Trinity's Bill Tupou tries to break the Catalans defence. (PIC: Bruce Rollinson/JPI Media)

By the end of this utterly one-sided destruction, a classy Catalans Dragons proved they are certainly no one-man show while their beleaguered, battered and humiliated opponents were left counting the cost in more ways than one.

Australian centre Folau, who had helped destroy Castleford Tigers with a stunning display down their right last Sunday, had been named in the Catalans 21-man squad but was not in the side after his wife gave birth to their first child during the week.

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Yet his absence offered Wakefield no relief whatsover; their opponents simply initially opted to attack down the opposite flank where, aided by some regular brilliance from the returning England full-back Sam Tomkins, Samson Langi was similarly dynamic.

He turned England centre Reece Lyne inside out on a couple of occasions early on as the French side quickly got off the mark, scoring tries via Matt Whitley and Langi himself.

Lacklustre Wakefield, with poor ball control and too meek in defence, wobbled far too often and in all areas of the field as they went on to suffer one of their biggest ever defeats.

When Catalans headed right, Chris Chester’s side were just as brittle, winger Tom Davies scoring two tries, both times set in motion by Tomkins whose array of passing quality caused Trinity nightmares.

Davies completed his hat-trick just 57 seconds into the second period with James Maloney’s fifth goal making it 30-0.

Wakefield's Romain Navarrette takes to the Catalans defence. (PIC: Bruce Rollinson/JPI Media)

After Davies’ first try, Wakefield full-back Tony Gigot sailed the restart out on the full against his former colleagues before David Fifita gifted another penalty in front of the posts for Maloney to slot one of his seven goals in a rout that saw Steve McNamara’s side move top of Super League.

Admittedly, Trinity - who lost 23-22 to Wigan Warriors last week - had some mitigation for falling further behind in the second half.

They lost three players to injury in the first period -Gigot, Kelepi Tanginoa and Lee Kershaw while Adam Tangata also needed an HIA - but, even by then, much of the damage was already done.

Wakefield had made changes to the side that lost to Wigan, Kershaw coming in for the injured Tom Johnstone - only to suffer his own injury - Ryan Hampshire taking Max Jowitt’s spot in the halves and Matty Ashurst and Joe Westerman bolstering their pack.

Wakefield Trinity finally get hold of Sam Tomkins, the England full-back who proved so destructive for Catalans Dragons. (PIC: Bruce Rollinson/JPI Media)

But they simply never got going after being splintered so often early on. In the second period, with just one fit replacement, it was obvious they would tire and it was no surprise to see the French side take such firm control.

Julian Bousquet scored Catalans’ sixth try in the 48th minute before Fouad Yaha rumbled over for another, England Knights back-row Whitley then claiming two more to secure his own treble.

Langi added his second late on with Tomkins taking over kicking duties with two from two as Maloney enjoyed a rest.

Both sides, of course, were due to face different opponents this weekend - Wakefield had St Helens and Catalans were down for Salford Red Devils - until the Covid 19 outbreak at Hull FC saw those fixtures ripped up and rearranged.

Wakefield Trinity after humiliating loss (PIC:Bruce Rollinson/JPIMedia)

Hull had originally seen six players and two staff test positive after Sunday’s game against Salford but the RFL announced this morning that number had risen to nine and three respectively.

After a second round of tests, Salford still had no positive results but that does nothing to aid them; they are sat in isolation with their game off regardless due to the test and trace procedure in place.

Meanwhile, Chester has a massive job on his hands getting his demoralised and injury-hit side ready for their Challenge Cup sixth round tie next Saturday.

Their opponents? Catalans.

Wakefield Trinity: Gigot; Kay, Lyne, Tupou, Kershaw; Miller, Hampshire; Kopczak, J Wood, Tanginoa, Pitts, Ashurst, Westerman. Substitutes: K Wood, Fifita, Navarrette, Tangata.

Catalans Dragons: S Tomkins; Davies, Langi, Mead, Yaha; Maloney, Drinkwater; Casty, McIlorum, Moa, Whitley, J Tomkins, Garcia. Substitutes: Bousquet, Jullien, Baitieri, Kasiano.

Referee: Chris Kendall (Huddersfield)

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