Manchester’s Big Matches – 1998 – Super League Grand Final
WIGAN WARRIORS 10 LEEDS RHINOS 4
A lovely try from wing maverick Jason Robinson set Wigan on their way to a close victory over Leeds Rhinos after a Grand Final play-off system was re-introduced to the Rugby League calendar.
Leeds led 4-0 heading towards half-time on a wretched night at Old Trafford. The rain tumbled down throughout and Richie Blackmore had opened the scoring for the Rhinos, the former New Zealand international finding his way to the line after 20 minutes. That looked like it would be the only score of the first half but Robinson had other ideas, slicing through from twenty metres out, right through the middle of the Leeds defence. Andy Farrell goaled to give Wigan a 6-4 half-time lead and potted two second half penalties to complete the score.
The win secured John Monie’s first trophy for Wigan since his high profile return to the club from Auckland Warriors.
Current Castleford Tigers coach Daryl Powell played in that inaugural Super League Final and told The Daily Mirror ahead of the 2017 Grand Final which featured Leeds and his side, “We stayed over that weekend, and we’re not doing that this year because I thought the period before the game was too long.” he said.
“We lost the game against Wigan in a real tight affair – it was wet, Jason Robinson ended up doing the old dancing feet and getting through us.
“It was my only ever Grand Final as a player, and I knew at the time it probably would be which was gut-wrenching.”
Here is that Jason Robinson try.