Tigers claw back Warriors
Dixon misses late conversion as Wigan let slip 22-4 half-time lead
Last Updated: 12/06/11 6:01pm
Finch: broke the deadlock at a rain-soaked PROBIZ Coliseum
Castleford fought back from an 18-point half-time deficit to salvage a 22-22 draw against Wigan at a rain-soaked PROBIZ Coliseum.
The Warriors, who opted to rest Sam Tomkins and George Carmont, looked to be coasting to victory at the midway point of the contest as they led 22-4.
Brett Finch, Josh Charnley, Paul Prescott and Joel Tomkins all touched down in the opening 40 minutes, with Pat Richards kicking three goals.
However the Tigers rallied in the second half, a brace of tries from Joe Arundel getting them within touching distance before Richard Mathers drew them level when he crossed in the final minute.
Kirk Dixon was left with the chance to complete the stunning comeback but, left with a tough kick from out wide, he couldn't land the conversion.
In the end the winger's struggles with the boot, he only landed one of his five shots at goal, cost his side a point in the final reckoning.
Still, Castleford fans will be grateful for taking anything from the game after it appeared Wigan would run out comfortable winners at the halfway stage.
Fulll-back Tomkins and centre Carmont were the only players rested by visiting coach Michael Maguire out of those involved in the inaugural CarPlan International Origin match between England and the Exiles on Friday.
Tiredness didn't seem to be an issue for those playing for a second time in less than 48 hours when Finch broke the deadlock when he pounced on a fumble by full-back Mathers to get over for a simple score.
A fine team move led to Charnley crossing in the right corner and when Prescott took Finch's pass to barge his way through from close range, the Cherry and Whites were in full command.
Castleford, who began with Rangi Chase on the bench after he played a key role for the Exiles in their 16-12 win at Headingley, finally put some points on the board after 35 minutes.
Dean Widders just managed to reach a clever kick by Danny Orr to make it 16-4, though Wigan weren't done yet in the first half.
A fine break from Richards, who also landed the conversion, gave Tomkins a try in the right corner to give Maguire's troops a comfortable cushion.
With the conditions deteriorating even further a Castleford recovery mission looked unlikely, even when Arundel squeezed over after 59 minutes.
But although Dixon again faltered with the conversion attempt, the Tigers continued to claw their way back when Aspinwall seized on a clever kick from Chase.
Dixon converted to cut Wigan's lead to eight points and with seven minutes remaining the Tigers grabbed their fourth try, Arundel scoring again after more good work from the impressive Chase.
With time ticking away the half-back came up with another assist just when his team needed him the most, as his fine pass sent Mathers diving over. Dixon, though, missed the extras from out wide, meaning honours ended even.
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