Catalans Dragons 28 Wakefield 30: Wildcats keep cool in the heat as Finn’s accuracy earns victory

Wildcats Liam Finn.
Wildcats Liam Finn.
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Pat Richards and Dave Taylor missed late openings as Wakefield moved into sixth place in the Super League table with a 30-28 win over Catalans Dragons.

The Wildcats took the lead in the eighth minute, a scrum play following a decision by referee Chris Campbell seeing Max Jowitt race over from 20 metres out before Liam Finn converted.

Catalans were level on 18 minutes as the new half-back combination of Lucas Albert and Tony Gigot combined for the latter to touch down to the right of the posts, with Richards adding the extras.

Catalans went 18-6 ahead with tries from Taylor and Justin Horo – both goaled by Richards – but Wakefield refused to wilt in the heat and an error by Morgan Escare offered them a chance to attack the Catalans line.

Tinirau Arona went close to scoring, and from the subsequent play-the-ball a short Scott Moore pass sent Jonny Malloy over. Finn converted and it was 18-18 at the break. Arona’s offload appearing to bounce forward before Craig Hall kicked ahead and collected for a try.

Bill Tupou scored a solo effort as Finn added the conversion to give the Wildcats the lead.

Catalans levelled the game up once again, just short of the hour, Escare collecting Albert’s grubber kick to score to the left of the posts, Richards converting.

Tension affected the players in the final quarter. Gigot snatched at a drop-goal attempt before Wakefield again took the lead.

David Fifita went within two metres of scoring, but was not put to ground, and a quick play-the-ball allowed Moore to send Michael Sio under the posts unopposed. Finn’s conversion gave the Wildcats a 30-24 lead.

Yaha gave the Catalans hope of stealing a point when he touched down from Escare’s pass but, crucially, Richards missed the conversion.

Catalans Dragons: Escare, Yaha, Garcia, Duport, Richards, Gigot, Albert, Baitieri, Taylor, Horo, Maria, Pelissier, Casty. Substitutes: Bousquet, Da Costa, Mason, Navarrete.

Wakefield: Jowitt, Lyne, Arundel, B. Tupou, Hall, Miller, Finn, Simon, Moore, Arona, Ashurst, Molloy, Sio. Substitutes: Scruton, A. Tupou, Walton, Fifita.

Referee: C Campbell (RFL).