There was little Magic at the Etihad Stadium for Wakefield Wildcats as they conceded nine tries to lose 50-12 to local rivals Castleford Tigers.
Richard Agar’s men started brightly enough, but failed to score until the 56th minute and found it tough going against a Tigers side on a mission after they had lost their last two games.
Castleford effectively had the game in control by half-time as they led 22-0. Yet they started sluggishly and needed to defend their line well in the early stages to keep Wakefield out.
Paul McShane went closest when held up over the line from a dart from acting half, but a great tackle by Liam Finn and Grant Millington ensured the Wildcats player could not ground the ball.
Castleford’s first real chance was taken on 11 minutes when they were controversially awarded a try as Daryl Clark shot through a gap to score. It appeared there could have been an obstruction on the way, but video referee Richard Silverwood awarded the try and Marc Sneyd kicked his first goal.
Clark was involved again with a fast pass out to Justin Carney on the wing and the Australian powerhouse brushed off Richard Mathers before forcing his way over the line for a great finish. Sneyd’s goal made it 12-0.
Three minutes later it was Clark again the supplier with a superb clean break from acting half on the half-way line. Jordan Tansey was up in support to finish off the move and Sneyd’s goal made it 18-0.
There was more controversy from the video referee on 25 minutes when Sneyd was denied by a last ditch tackle by Jarrod Sammut, who appeared to force the ball loose with a one-on-one ball steal. Michael Shenton pounced on the loose ball to touch down over the line, but a knock-on against Sneyd was given.
Wakefield’s relief was shortlived as Shenton again picked up a loose ball, this time near his own line and he had the pace to race fully 90 metres to the opposite line for a spectacular score. Sneyd surprisingly missed the conversion and it stayed 22-0 to the break.
Cas carried on where they left off in the second half as a great break from their own half saw Sneyd involved three times with Grant Millington and Shenton before scoring a try he converted.
Millington then appeared to bomb another try when he made a break from debutant Lee Jewitt’s offload, being tackled after ignoring the unmarked Tansey. But the ball was swiftly played left from the play-the-ball and Carney went over for his second score with Sneyd converting from the touchline to make it 34-0 with almost half-an-hour to go.
Wakefield finally had something to celebrate as Nick Scruton touched down under the posts from Pita Godinet’s fine offload and Sammut added the goal.
Sammut came close to another score soon after only to be well tackled by Jake Webster, but it was back to Cas domination when Sneyd backed up Carney’s break to add his second try.
Frankie Mariano then crossed against his former team from a smart Sneyd offload.
Wakefield earned further consolation when Paul Sykes finished a long range move started by Chris Riley’s break from inside his own 10-metre line.
Sammut added the goal, but that was it as far as the Wildcats were concerned as the Tigers had the final word with another long effort by Clark and Sneyd’s seventh goal.
Scorers - Castleford: Tries Clark 2, Carney 2, Tansey, Shenton, Sneyd 2, Mariano; goals Sneyd 7. Wakefield: Tries Scruton, Sykes; goals Sammut 2.
Castleford: Tansey; Dixon, Webster, Shenton, Carney; Sneyd, Finn; Lynch, Clark, Huby, Holmes, Hauraki, Millington. Subs: Mariano, Wheeldon, Ellis, Jewitt.
Wakefield: Sammut; Mathers, Collis, Walshaw, Riley; Sykes, Siejka; Anderson, McShane, Scruton, Ryan, Kirmond, Smith. Subs: Godinet, Moore, Washbrook, Fairbank.
Referee: James Child.