Wakefield 22-12 Catalans: Danny Brough inspires Trinity to first win of season
Last Updated: 22/02/19 6:02am
Danny Brough capped his 500th career appearance by inspiring Wakefield to a first win of the Betfred Super League season as Catalans Dragons were beaten 22-12 at the Mobile Rocket Stadium.
The 36-year-old half-back, sin-binned for dissent in both of Trinity's opening matches, was given the honour of leading the team out on his landmark appearance and played a huge role in the victory.
The French side led 8-6 after 29 minutes but their indiscipline once again proved their undoing as the home team built up a head of steam to lead 20-8 at half-time.
Wakefield created the first opportunity when full-back Ryan Hampshire sliced through the visitors' defence and, although he was brought back for an obstruction, he proved more clinical in the 15th minute when his half-break gave winger Tom Johnstone just enough room to squeeze over for the game's first try.
The lead lasted only four minutes as winger David Mead broke through the Trinity defence to get centre Samisoni Langi over for an equalising try.
Wakefield missed a glorious chance when second-rower Matty Ashurst dropped Johnstone's pass with the tryline beckoning and Sam Tomkins made them pay when he kicked a penalty to put the Dragons in front.
However, Tony Gigot, who had a miserable night, dropped the ball from Brough's kick-off and Wakefield's barnstorming prop David Fifita punished him straight away by barging his way over for a solo try.
Brough kicked his second conversion and added a penalty to stretch the lead to 14-8 before putting in a kick on the last tackle for second rower James Batchelor to score Wakefield's third.
Tomkins was put on report by referee Chris Kendall after knocking over the official in the build-up to the try and watched Brough extend the home side's lead to 20-8 by the break.
The half-time hooter could not come quick enough for Steve McNamara's team after conceding 14 points in the last 10 minutes and they looked more purposeful early in the second half.
Wakefield had substitute prop Keegan Hirst sin-binned for a high tackle on Jason Baitieri, two minutes after coming on to give Fifita a well-earned breather, but the 12 men defended stoutly to keep their line intact until being restored to their full complement.
Ironically, it was only after Hirst returned from the bin Catalans breached Trinity's defence, Langi taking Tomkins' pass to force his way over for his second of the match.
But Wakefield never looked like relinquishing their grip on the game and Brough kicked a second penalty in the 65th minute, his fifth goal from as many attempts.
The visitors were then reduced to 12 men when Baitieri was given a yellow card for foul play and Wakefield loose forward Tinirau Arona became the third player to be sin-binned for delaying a restart as the game disintegrated in the final quarter.
The Catalans were handed an injury scare eight minutes from the end when Mead was carried from the field on a stretcher following lengthy treatment for a leg injury.
Wakefield Trinity coach Chris Chester admits the second half left him with plenty to consider with Catalans allowed to work themselves into positions to recover.
Chester told Sky Sports: "I'll sleep well tonight. It was a very scrappy game, and we were our own worst enemies again tonight with another man sin-binned for something stupid and then we missed touch with two minutes to go which summed us up.
"The most important thing was that we got the two points but I wasn't happy with how we managed that second half. I was pleased with our physicality and we've defended well now for two weeks but we'll take lessons from the second half."
Catalans coach Steve McNamara rued his side's profligacy and ill-discipline after succumbing to a second straight away loss of the campaign.
He said: "We never conceded in the second half which I felt would give us a chance but our lack of discipline and our last play were the difference between the two teams.
"We're still a bit clunky, but we stayed in the game. We just didn't put enough pressure on them when they went down to 12 men. We've got three or four players coming off there who are struggling. David Mead is the major one, and for him to stay down it must've been pretty bad."