Halifax failed to make it back to back Super 8s Qualifiers wins despite a wholehearted effort at Super League outfit Wakefield.
Richard Marshall’s side, who broke their duck with a 34-12 success over Leigh last weekend, went down 30-12 at Belle Vue to Brian Smith’s Wildcats.
The visitors, whose final game at Bradford will now be televised next Saturday (3.0), trailed 12-6 just before the break, but a Mikael Simon try three minutes before the hooker, converted by Joe Arundel, left them with an 18-6 deficit that they never really looked like closing.
Wakefield took the early lead, scoring after seven minutes through Ken Sio, the hooker just having enough reach to score from dummy half.
Arundel converted to leave Halifax trailing 6-0, although the response was immediate.
Wakefield lost the ball close to half way, creating the position for Scott Murrell to cut straight through the line.
The stand off was rounded up, but on the next play the ball went right, where Ben Heaton put his winger Jake Eccleston over in the corner.
Steve Tyrer nailed the touchline conversion and the visitors continued to give just about as good as they got until the half hour mark, when Sio grabbed a second, Arundel making it 12-6.
Halifax probably needed to hang on to half time, but it proved beyond them; Mickael Simon barging off two tacklers to touchdown three minutes before the break and Arundel making it 18-6.
Halifax started the second half strongly, with both Tyrer and Heaton only held up by desperate defence as the visitors moved the ball with purpose.
It was Wakefield who added to their tally though, Arundel making it 20-6 with an easy penalty after 53 minutes.
The cat and mouse continued for most of the second period, Wakefield looking stronger without being incisive, Halifax forcing the ball a little too much, albeit understandably given the scoreline.
In the end, Wakefield’s Leeds-bound on-loan Huddersfield prop Anthony Mullally scored with 12 minutes remaining to seal a win that might just have secured Wakefield’s place in the so-called million pound game.
Murrell finally cracked the home defence inside the final few minutes, Tyrer converting, before teenage full back Max Jowitt pounced in the last minute for Wakefield.
Halifax: Johnston; Eccleston, Heaton, Tyrer, Saltonstall; Robinson, Murrell; Cahalane, Maneely, Ambler, Tangata, Manning, Fairbank. Subs: Divorty, Kaye, Bracek, Moore
Wakefield: Jowitt; Johnstone, Tupou, Arundel, Tansey; Miller, Godinet; Scruton, Sio, Walker, Washbrook, Simon, Annakin. Subs: Yates, Crowther, Ashurst, Mullally
Referee: Phil Bentham