Super League: Wigan Warriors 20-0 Leigh Centurions
|Betfred Super League|
|Wigan (6) 20|
|Tries: Gelling 2, Williams Goals: Escare 4|
|Leigh (0) 0|
Centre Anthony Gelling scored two tries to guide champions Wigan Warriors to a derby victory against Leigh Centurions, who failed to score a point, in only their third Super League meeting.
Tough conditions made expansive play difficult, and Gelling's first score on the back of a George Williams kick was the only try of the first half.
Joe Burgess limped off with an ankle injury but Wigan overcame his loss.
Williams crossed himself before Gelling's second ended Leigh hopes.
Leigh's promotion to Super League for 2017 restored this traditional rivalry to the regular-season calendar, although a trip to the champions proved a tough ask for Neil Jukes' squad.
That said, it was a kinder scoreline than their previous visit to their rivals' home, which ended in a 62-6 defeat during a forgettable 2005 campaign.
Williams in particular proved the catalyst, scoring a try and creating two more as Wigan, back on home turf after their enforced switch to Widnes a week ago, proved too strong against a fired-up Centurions pack containing four ex-Warriors players.
Morgan Escare continued his decent form from the tee, adding eight points, while Leigh, despite a spirited display, did not get themselves on the board.
The win maintained Wigan's unbeaten start to the season and they are second in the table on points difference to Castleford.
The only concern for the Warriors will be the loss of Burgess, Ryan Sutton (eye) and Lewis Tierney (ankle) to knocks during the game, all of which were assessed after the match in hospital.
Wigan head coach Shaun Wane told BBC Radio Manchester: "It was really good against a really good team. I'm really happy with the 20 points, but we always looked in control with our defence.
"They didn't really bother us, the conditions helped that but we spoke all week about that.
"This is a big one, the players all week said how they've been looking forward to this one, and to stop them scoring with the quality they've got is great for me.
"George Williams played outstandingly well and Tommy Leuluai was very good."
Leigh head coach Neil Jukes told BBC Radio Manchester: "We hung in there with our defence but we put too much pressure on ourselves with the ball. We didn't challenge them, and when we did get field position we dropped it on play one or play two.
"We were off our game management, making sure we did the simple things right to make sure we get field position, but we didn't do that for long enough periods and Wigan kept it simple.
"We spoke about playing with control, playing with emotion and intensity but control, but we didn't have that control in our play.
"We'd have had to play very well to come here and we were nowhere near that and we got what we deserved."
Wigan Warriors: Escare; Tierney, Gelling, Burgess, Marshall; Williams, Leuluai; Nuualusala, Powell, Flower, Isa, Farrell, O'Loughlin
Replacements: J.Tomkins, Clubb, Tautai, Sutton
Leigh Centurions: Brown; Dawson, Crooks, Tonga, Naughton; Reynolds, Drinkwater; Hock, Higham, Green, Tickle, Vea, Hansen
Replacements: Pelissier, Hopkins, Acton, Burr