Super League: Wigan Warriors 26-20 Bradford Bulls

Chris Tuson

Wigan Warriors (4) 26

Tries:
Charnley 2, Tuson 2, Thornley
Goals:
Richards 3

Bradford Bulls (16) 20

Tries:
Platt, Sidlow, Bateman
Goals:
Foster 4

Chris Tuson scored a last-minute try as Wigan came from behind to snatch victory against Bradford Bulls.

Josh Charnley's try gave the Warriors an early lead but scores from Michael Platt, Adam Sidlow and John Bateman put the Bulls 12 points up at the break.

Jamie Foster added two penalties for Bradford, but Charnley's second, Iain Thornley's effort and two from Tuson earned a last-gasp win for Wigan.

Their lead over Warrington at the top of the table stands at two points.

Bradford have now lost their last six matches, while Wigan ended their recent dip in form, avoiding a third straight defeat that looked extremely likely until their late revival.

Shaun Wane's side began the game in style as England international Charnley touched down inside two minutes for his 24th Super League try of the season and overtook Warriors team-mate Sam Tomkins - still missing through injury - at the top of the scoring charts.

But Bradford, on an awful run that has seen them drop out of the top eight, fought back to take control of the match with three scores in 20 first-half minutes.

Centre Platt was first to cross the whitewash for the Bulls after collecting Sam Wood's pass, before forward Sidlow pounced on a loose ball following full-back Ryan Hampshire's error.

Bateman then saw off three Wigan defenders to give Bradford a 16-4 lead at the interval, which they extended with the first of two penalties from Foster.

Hampshire, the architect of Charnley's first try, repeated the trick for the winger's second, before Liam Farrell set up Tuson to reduce the deficit to four points.

Foster landed another kick at goal to stretch Bradford's lead again, but centre Thornley levelled, juggling a pass from Hampshire before touching down.

As the clock ticked towards 80 minutes, forward Tuson - who will join Wakefield at the end of the season - broke the line and kept his footing, as well as his composure, to complete a remarkable comeback.

VIEWS FROM THE DRESSING ROOM

Wigan Warriors head coach Shaun Wane:

"It was exciting. Fair play to Bradford - they turned up and played really well. They threatened our line and they are busted like us with injuries.

"It was two equally matched teams and I thought they played very well.

"To win that game was a great effort from us. We showed gritty determination to stay in it right until the end.

"I knew we had tries in us. We just needed to keep hold of the ball and complete our sets. In the last 25 minutes we did that and we put some tries away."

Bradford Bulls head coach Francis Cummins:

"Sometimes you feel you don't get what you deserve and that is what we are feeling now.

"You know when you come to Wigan that you are not going to get all the possession and maybe not get all the calls you should get - that is my opinion. But we gave them a bit back and we played really well.

"I just get a bit frustrated with some decisions. They didn't need any help."

FRIDAY'S LINE-UPS

Wigan: Hampshire; Charnley, Thornley, Gelling, Richards; Green, Smith; Crosby, McIlorum, Dudson, Hansen, Farrell, Tuson.

Replacements: Hughes, A. Powell, Flower, L. Tomkins.

Bradford: Foster; Kear, Purtell, Platt, Wood; Addy, Gale; Scruton, Diskin, Manuokafoa, Bateman, Blythe, Donaldson.

Replacements: L'Estrange, Sidlow, Roberts, Evans.

Referee: Tim Roby (RFL)

Attendance: 13,213

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