Kay hat-trick seals dramatic win for Wakefield Wildcats over Castleford Tigers

Liam Kay
Liam Kay

Liam Kay scored a hat-trick to seal a dramatic 36-32 victory for Wakefield Trinity Wildcats in their derby day clash with Castleford Tigers.

Kay scored his third try in the closing seconds as both sides pushed for victory in their final outings of the Super League season.

The game appeared to be heading towards a draw but as Tigers pushed for a late winning score, Wildcats stole possession and Kay raced upfield to cross the whitewash and send the home fans delirious.

Wakefield began brightly and twice threatened to cross the visitors’ tryline inside the opening couple of minutes but when the hosts lost possession, Cas pounced to break the deadlock.

A superb pass from Rangi Chase sent James Clare scampering upfield from his own half to touch down. Kirk Dixon missed the goal.

Another loss of possession allowed Castleford to add to their tally on 10 minutes.

This time Wakefield dropped the ball inside their own 20 metre line and Chase was sent over in the corner.

Wakefield opened their account on 16 minutes when a fine offload from Paul Aiton released Matty Wildie and Frankie Mariano was in support to gallop over. Cockayne’s goal made it 10-6.

A dropped restart gifted the ball back to the Tigers and Clare eased over in the corner for a Dixon-improved try.

Back came the Wildcats and Cockayne brilliantly took a high ball on his own line and then charged upfield to send Smith clear and only a brilliant tackle stopped him from scoring.

The hosts were not to be denied however and on the next set, Liam Kay powered over. Smith added the goal.

The game was tied when Frankie Mariano touched-down and Smith converted to give the hosts the lead but Clare bagged his hat-trick to edge the visitors ahead again.

Wakefield regained the lead through Kyle Trout’s try and Smith’s conversion on the half-time hooter before Liam Kay got onto the end of a nice passing move to extend Wildcats’ lead to 28-20 early in the second half.

But Tigers stormed back and a try from Weller Hauraki and Clare’s fourth, both improved by Dixon, gave them a 32-28 advantage.

The game appeared to be heading the way of the visitors but the outstanding Ali Lauitiiti powered over to level the scores with eight minutes remaining.

Both teams pushed on in search of a winner and as time ran out, Tigers launched a final assault.

Chase appeared to be lining up a drop goal attempt but he elected to run with the ball and Lauitiiti produced a crucial intervention and a wonderful pass to put Kay racing away for the winning try.