Wigan 18 St. Helens 26 (VIEW MATCH)
1984 Lancashire Cup final
Cup kings of Lancashire!
Wigan won the toss to play the match at Central Park - the first time that a final had not been held at a neutral venue and the first to be played on a Sunday afternoon. The 26,074 spectators who packed the terraces on that murky October afternoon witnessed a devastating first-half performance of awesome power and ball-handling skill as Meninga ruthlessly exposed the defensive frailties of Wigan's right flank. The fifteen stone giant took less than seven minutes to make his presence felt. Taking hooker Graham Liptrot's pass about fifteen yards from the line, he sold a brilliant dummy to John Ferguson, before bulldozing his way over for Saints' opening try. Skipper Harry Pinner began another fine move with a superb pass for Andy Platt to pierce the Riversiders' defence. He handed on to fellow second-rower Paul Round, who was halted inches from the line by a last-ditch Ferguson tackle. Meninga, at acting half back, almost casually fed the eager Roy Haggerty, an early replacement for the injured Phil Veivers, who charged in from close range. The conversion put St.Helens 12-2 ahead and in the 35th.minute the ball was swept, inevitably, over to the left once again after Graeme West had lost possession. Neil Holding fed Meninga on the burst and although three Wigan defenders tried to contain him, Big Mal still managed to conjure up the perfect ball for winger Sean Day to score in the corner.
Coach Benyon and Meninga
A minute before half-time, the strong-running Round looped over a one-handed pass to Mighty Mal in full cry. He handed off fellow Aussie Mark Cannon with contemptuous ease, leaving full-back Sean Edwards with the hopeless task of preventing yet more Meninga mayhem!
Despite the shock of a seemingly unassailable 24-2 deficit, Wigan took the game to St. Helens after the interval and produced a splendid fight-back, with tries from winger Henderson Gill and Nicky Kiss, with centre Whitfield adding two goals. Yet a marvelous penalty from Sean Day ensured a 26-18 victory for the Saints - their first major trophy success for seven years.