|Leeds (0) 6|
|Try: Handley Goal: Martin|
|Wakefield (20) 30|
|Tries: Jowitt 3, Fifita, Senior 2 Goals: Hampshire 3|
Max Jowitt’s hat-trick helped Wakefield Trinity pick up a third Super League win in a row, stunning Challenge Cup winners Leeds Rhinos in St Helens.
Jowitt scored three and David Fifita thundered over in a sensational first-half display by Wakefield.
After both sides traded second-half chances, Ash Handley finished off a Liam Sutcliffe break to put Leeds in.
Brett Ferres and Mikolaj Oledzki went close for Leeds but Innes Senior’s late double sealed it for Trinity.
The loss is a dent to Leeds’ top-four hopes, leaving them on a 56.25% win percentage – short of Catalans’ 66.67% in fourth.
For an hour this was Wakefield at their best, taking control of the game with a game plan which exploited an explosive three-quarter line featuring the pace and skill of Reece Lyne and Tom Johnstone in particular.
Although his third was a close-range plunge, Jowitt’s first two scores came from distance after big shifts to the edges, while Senior profited from a stretched defence to cross twice late on.
Fifita’s barrelling run through came on the back of waves of Trinity pressure, and he was able to return shortly after a head injury assessment.
Leeds, who play Wakefield again on Sunday, failed to find their rhythm in the first half but were much improved after the break, yet still unable to overcome the deficit.
Alex Mellor’s shoulder to the head of Ryan Hampshire led to a sinbinning and left the Rhinos short in their bid to fight back.
Leeds head coach Richard Agar: “In the second 20 we looked low on energy and that led to a couple of soft tries towards the end of the first half.
“I thought we tried hard to get back into the game but it was a night where we didn’t look like we could find a way. Basically there was not enough energy in the tank.”
Wakefield head coach Chris Chester: “It’s amazing what one win does to the group’s confidence, you saw that tonight with the free-flowing rugby.
“I thought the performance was full of energy straight from the kick-off and to concede only six points is really pleasing.”
Leeds: Walker; L Briscoe, A Sutcliffe, L Sutcliffe, Handley; Lui, Gale; Oledzki, Leeming, Seumanufagai, Martin, Mellor, Thompson
Interchanges: Dwyer, Smith, Ferres, Holroyd.
Wakefield: Jowitt; Senior, Lyne, Tupou, Johnstone; Miller, Hampshire; Arona, Crowther, Fifita, Batchelor, Tanginoa, Westerman.
Interchanges: Wood, Tangata, Battye, Walker.
Referee: Ben Thaler