Wakefield Trinity Wildcats celebrated their 140th anniversary with a convincing 46-14 victory over London Broncos on Sunday.
Captain fantastic Danny Kirmond led by example with a hat-trick in Wakefield’s eight-try success to help keep his side in the hunt for a play-off place.
Wildcats dominated right from the off when Peter Fox touched down inside three minutes and four more tries followed in a first-half dominated by the hosts.
Broncos scored the last try of the first-half, however, and added the next two after the restart to spark hopes of a fightback at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium.
That was until Kirmond completed his treble against the injury-hit Broncos and further tries from Frankie Mariano and Kyle Wood added gloss to the scoreline.
Wildcats, searching for back-to-back victories and a double over Tony Rea’s men after a comfortable 28-0 win in the reverse fixture, were without hooker Paul Aiton through suspension and Matty Wildie replaced him. Kyle Amor was handed a start at prop and Frankie Mariano also took to the field from the off at second row.
London, with just three Super League wins to their name going into the match, were without eleven first-team players through injury and handed debuts to two under-19s players, Harry Little and Joel Wicks, while Jacob Fairbank started at hooker after joining on loan from Huddersfield Giants.
The visitors had conceded 82 points in their last outing against Warrington Wolves and that leaking defence showed its head as early as the third minute when Wildcats opened the scoring.
Tim Smith’s pass released Richard Mathers on the break and he passed to Dean Collis, who in turn found Fox out wide to score. Lee Smith kicked the first of six successful conversions.
Wildcats kept the pressure on and Kirmond was held up over the line as the first half flowed largely one way in front of 8,203 spectators, the highest crowd for a game between the sides in Wakefield.
It was not long before Wakefield were over again, with Mathers turning architect to scorer and seven minutes later Kirmond bagged his first try of the afternoon when he eased over from dummy-half.
Wakefield started to turn on the style and Paul Sykes juggled a close-range Tim Smith pass to touch down as the hosts showcased some clinical finishing in a purple patch.
Broncos asserted their first spell of pressure around the half-hour mark but could not offer the same kind of qualities in their attack when Ben Fisher spilled the ball yards from the line under pressure from Mathers.
Ali Lauitiiti, on early to replace Dean Collis, who suffered a hamstring injury, suffered the same fate at the other end but just minutes later Wakefield were over the line again when Kirmond hauled four Broncos men over with him.
It was almost the perfect half for Agar’s men but Broncos grabbed some light at the end of the tunnel when debutant Little put winger Luke Colbon in minutes before the half-time hooter.
It came at just the right time for the visitors, who started the second half in more confident mood and turned the game back into a contest with two tries in five minutes.
Kieran Dixon grabbed both to leave London’s mountain a less daunting one to climb. Shane Grady added one conversion.
The next score was going to be crucial and it was Wakefield, and Kirmond, who grabbed it to all-but seal the points.
It deflated the visitors and Wakefield went over twice more in the closing stages, through Mariano and Kyle Wood, to complete the victory.
Wildcats: Mathers, Fox, Collis, L Smith, Cockayne, Sykes, T Smith, Poore, Wildie, Amor, Mariano, Kirmond Washbrook. Subs: Lauitiiti, Wood, Wilkes.
Broncos: Robertson, Colbon, Channing, Little, Sarginson, Dorn, Krasniqi, Fisher, Wheeldon, Melling, Grady, Fairbank. Subs: Bryant, Bishay, Dollapi, Wicks.
Referee: Thierry Alibert.