Bevan French scored his fourth Super League hat-trick of the season as Wigan claimed a 52-6 win over Toulouse at the DW Stadium to further strengthen their second spot in the table.
Matt Peet’s side regained their three-point advantage over third-placed Huddersfield following the home victory.
French’s three tries also saw him surpass 200 Super League points and 100 for the season.
There were two more milestones for Wigan players, with Harry Smith scoring his 250th Super League point and Jake Bibby crossing for his 100th.
John Bateman and Liam Farrell both made their returns from injury and were named at starting back-row respectively. Abbas Miski replaced Liam Marshall on the wing.
Toulouse were without Olly Ashall-Bott due to suspension, with Chris Hankinson named at full-back. Lucas Albert partnered Tony Gigot in the halves, with Corey Norman’s season over due to suspension.
French scored his first of the evening in the opening three minutes. The Warriors finding space on the wing and the off-contract star put in a kick for himself to chase and score.
Cade Cust extended the lead on 10 minutes with a slick dummy which presented a gap for him to score his third try of the season.
It was then over to Wigan’s other playmaker in Smith on 27 minutes. The Wales-eligible youngster supporting Kaide Ellis who provided an offload for the 22-year-old’s sixth try of the season.
Bibby extended the lead to 24-0 just before the half-time hooter. The centre also remains off-contract beyond the 2022 season.
HT: Wigan 24-0 Toulouse
Wigan started the second half exactly like the first, with French crossing on 44 minutes, supporting a break from Jai Field to score his second of the evening.
French completed his hat-trick just three minutes later, pouncing on a loose ball to race 60 metres and extend the lead.
Kai Pearce-Paul scored his fourth try of the season on 57 minutes, before Wigan academy product Matty Russell scored Toulouse’s first and only on 64 minutes against his former club.
Cust made it a brace with just seven minutes left on the clock, before Farrell crossed on his return on 76 minutes for a 52-6 full-time result.
Toulouse remain at the bottom of the table with just three games left of the regular season.
FT: Wigan 52-6 Toulouse
Wigan: Field, French, Bibby, Pearce-Paul, Miski, Cust, Smith, Singleton, O’Neill, Byrne, Farrell, Bateman, Partington. Bench: Mago, Ellis, Shorrocks, McDonnell.
Tries: French (3), Cust (2), Smith, Bibby, Pearce-Paul.
Goals: Smith 8/9
Toulouse: Hankinson, Marcon, Jussaume, Armitage, Russell, Gigot, Albert, Navarrete, Peats, Alvaro, Stefani, Pezet, Marion. Bench: Pelissier, Puech, Cunningham, Belmas.
Goals: Hankinson 1/1
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The article Wigan 52-6 Toulouse: Bevan French scores hat-trick as Warriors strengthen second spot appeared first on Loverugbyleague.com.