Wakefield 30 Catalans Dragons 10: Caton-Brown hat-trick as Trinity halt losing streak

Wakefield's David Fifita is tackled by Catalans defenders.
Wakefield's David Fifita is tackled by Catalans defenders.

AN ILL-DISCIPLINED performance by visitors Catalans Dragons was ruthlessly punished as Wakefield Trinity’s stand-in winger Mason Caton-Brown and substitute prop Craig Huby both enjoyed an afternoon to remember.

Caton-Brown scored a hat-trick and Huby marked his 300th career appearance with a try in a 30-10 win which ended Trinity’s three-game losing run.

Four of Trinity’s six touchdowns came against 12 men after Catalans had wingers Fouad Yaha and Vincent Duport and half-back Luke Walsh sin-binned in separate incidents.

Trinity were under the cosh for the opening 36 minutes and trailed to a Duport try and Walsh conversion, but four minutes before the interval Yaha was yellow-carded for holding down and Trinity scored three times before he returned.

Catalans had lacked a cutting edge despite long periods spent camped near Wakefield’s line, but once Trinity got an opportunity their finishing was ruthless.

A pass from Scott Grix sent Caton-Brown straight through the gap left by Yaha’s departure and in the next set Ben Jones-Bishop crossed on the other flank from Reece Lyne’s long ball, making it 8-6 at half-time.

Trinity were fortunate to have Lyne on the bench for his first appearance since suffering a knee injury in March. He came on in the centres after just six minutes, when Tom Johnstone hobbled off and Caton-Brown was switched to the left-wing.

Caton-Brown touched down again from Jacob Miller’s pass on 43 minutes, though with Liam Finn missing all three conversions Trinity led only 12-6.

Yaha crossed from Tony Gigot’s pass within moments of his return, but Caton-Brown completed his hat-trick with a spectacular finish at the corner just before the hour.

Walsh was sin-binned for protesting and Finn landed his first goal to make the gap eight points.

Trinity made the game safe with 16 minutes left when a pass by Myler went to ground, was gathered by Jones-Bishop and he raced 80 metres to cross between the posts. Finn converted and completed the scoring with his third goal after Huby went over off a one-two with Matty Ashurst.

Three minutes before the end Duport became the third Catalans player banished to the naughty step, moments after they were placed on a team warning.

The win lifted Trinity above Catalans on the table and coach Chris Chester was delighted with all aspects of his team’s performance.

“I thought defensively we really turned up for each other today,” he said. “We just strangled them with field position in the second half. We said at half-time we just had to hold on to the ball. For the first five sets of the game we lost the ball or came up with a poor pass.

“We were our own worst enemies. Their first try was a blatant obstruction missed by the referee, but we showed some real character and some team spirit, which was pleasing.”

Three defeats over Easter had threatened to derail Wakefield’s season, but Chester insisted: “We haven’t been far away. It is pleasing that we’ve ground out a really good win and it’s our first double of the season.

“It was a really strong performance and pleasing to get back on the horse.”

Of Caton-Brown, Chester said: “He is full of confidence at the minute.

“He is scoring some really good tries, carrying the ball well and getting his nose through the line. He is a handful.”

Wakefield’s medical staff were due to check on Johnstone today. Chester confirmed: “He’s done something to his knee. We’re hoping it’s nothing too serious that’s going to keep him out for a long space of time.”

Wakefield Trinity: Grix, Jones-Bishop, Arundel, Caton-Brown, Johnstone, Miller, Finn, England, Wood, Fifita, Ashurst, Handley, Arona. Substitutes: Batchelor, Huby, Hirst, Lyne.

Catalans Dragons: Gigot, Duport, Inu, Thornley, Yaha, Walsh, Myler, Moa, Aiton, Casty, Perez, Garcia, Bird. Substitutes: Bousquet, Bosc, Simon, Margalet.

Referee: P Bentham (Warrington).