In the first game to be played in front of a crowd since the restart, the Wigan Warriors travelled to the Catalans Dragons with the winner moving further up the table.
Despite a bright start from the Dragons, the Warriors were the first to cross after a line break from Liam Farrell, after a forward pass from Jackson Hastings, set the platform to attack.
The ball was pushed left on the short side and Oliver Gildart beat the tackle of James Maloney to score.
The Dragons continued to put pressure on the Warriors, and just after the 20 minute mark, won a fresh set of six after Joe Burgess failed to claim Maloney’s cross field kick.
Ill-discipline from Wigan was keeping Catalans camped inside the 20-metre line.
The Warriors held firm until the half-hour mark, despite nearly losing Bevan French to the sin-bin for a ball strip.
In Wigan’s exit set, Joe Burgess skipped to the outside of Lewis Tierney and raced down the left-wing before passing inside to Bevan French, who managed to run around and score behind the posts.
Just before the half-time break, Sam Kasiano dropped the ball on his own 40-metre line, and the loose ball found the hands of Hastings, who released Joe Burgess.
The winger then raced under the posts to score while the Dragons stood still and waited for the referee to call a ball strip.
The Warriors won a penalty on the 40-metre line after a dangerous tackle on George Burgess
This allowed Hardaker to convert and make it an 18-point lead.
Right on the hooter, Sam’s Kasiano and Powell started pushing and shoving, but unfortunately the Dragons had no time to attack before the hooter sounded.
HALF-TIME: Catalans Dragons 0-18 Wigan Warriors
Once again Catalans started the half the brighter as they exploited the talents of Israel Folau down the right edge.
Wigan were conceding plenty of penalties to stop the Dragons, and just three minutes into the half, they found themselves down a man.
Joe Greenwood was the man picked out by Chris Kendall, but the Dragons still failed to get through the Warriors stern defence.
Despite being a man down, the Warriors crossed once again.
Hastings switched the play with Gildart, who stepped off his right foot to attack the space he created.
With Lewis Tierney coming in to make the tackle, the centre flicked the offload out of the back to Burgess, and the winger picked up his second.
With an hour of the game gone, the Warriors were still 22-points ahead, but the Dragons were winning the possession battle.
A long run from Greenwood, who had returned to the field, left the Dragons defence at sixes and sevens, but the home side managed to hold out.
With around ten minutes to go, Sam Powell was the recipient of a short ball from Ethan Havard and span out of the tackle to score a well deserved try.
A few minutes later, the Dragons picked up a consolation try as he crashed over from short range and through the tackle of Oliver Partington and Powell.
With three minutes left until the end of the game, Catalans were searching for a consolation try, pushing Wigan towards there own tryline.
The ball was spread wide to Fouad Yaha in the 80th minute, and the winger busted through a desperate tackle and cut the gap.
Maloney attempted to convert from the sideline, and converted to make the scoreline slightly more respectable.
FULL-TIME: Catalans Dragons 12-28 Wigan Warriors
S. Tomkins, Tierney, Langi, Folau, Yaha, Maloney, Albert, Bousquet, Da Costa, Casty, J. Tomkins, Whitley, Garcia
Interchanges: Jullien, Goudemand, Baitieri, Kasiano
Goals: Maloney (1/1)
French, J. Burgess, Gildart, Hardaker, Manfredi, Hastings, Leuluai, Bullock, Powell, Havard, Isa, Farrell, Partington
Interchanges: G. Burgess, Greenwood, Shorrocks, Smith
Tries: Gildart, French, J. Burgess (2) Powell
Goals: Hardaker (4/6)
Referee: C. Kendall
Touch Judges: G. Jones, D. Bowmer
Video Referee: R. Hicks
Image Source: @SuperLeague (twitter)