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Pre Season Match Report: Warrington 12 Wigan 20
Posted by Bilko on January 27 2010 - 23:22

Warrington Wolves v Wigan Warriors - Paul Wood Testimonial (Friendly).
Wednesday 27th January 2010. Kick Off 7:45pm at Halliwell Jones Stadium.

It has to be said, it was a pretty impressive defensively display tonight from Wigan but we didn't half create our own hard work with terrible handling. Warrington were gifted territory almost exclusively in Wigan's half for long periods during the game but fortunately did bugger all with it most of the time. As good as Wigan's defence was, Warrington's attack was pretty lame.

Opportunities were limited in attack but we took our chances well to earn our first real victory at Halliwell Jones Stadium against a full strength Warrington side - although it'll count for nowt if we lose when we return in 24 days.

Warrington got off to the better start with a try after just four minutes. Cameron Phelps failed to deal with a chip over the top by Lee Briers and from the error Adrian Morley was able to score from close range. Conversion from Briers made it 6-0.

Wigan though came back strongly with the help of Thierry Alibert who's whistle blowing ensured we got five sets in a row. This pressure told on 16 minutes when a neat grubber from Sean O'Loughlin was pounced on by ex Wire Martin Gleeson. Pat Richards' conversion was wide of the mark so the score was 6-4 to Warrington.

Three minutes later Wigan took the lead for the first time. Sam Tomkins broke straight through the heart of the Warrington defence and although they recovered to catch him, quick hands saw them stretched out wide and Amos Roberts was sent in the right corner. Pat missed a second conversion though so the lead was just 8-6 after 20 minutes.

The second quarter of the match was pretty much all Warrington, as Wigan struggled to complete sets. We defended at least six attacks on our line during this period. But we managed to hold our slender lead up to half time.

Into the second half and Wigan brought on Paul Deacon to make his Cherry&White bow with Thomas Leuluai switching to hooker. But it was Warrington who continued to attack the Wigan line and a break down the left by Ryan Atkins should have seen him sent Matt King in for an easy score, but instead he threw the ball into the grateful arms of Amos Roberts.

On 50 minutes Wigan brought on Karl Pryce and Darrell Goulding to replace Pat Richards and George Carmont down the left and the move immediately paid dividends. Ok it may have been a bit of coincidence but within two minutes of them coming on, we were first held up over the line then Lee Mossop was sent in close to the posts by O'Loughlin. With Pat off the field I expected Deacon would take the conversion but instead Roberts added the simple extras to make it 14-6.

From the restart Wigan knocked on and this error brought on a second extended period of defensive pressure, which lasted for another good twenty minutes. Every time we got the ball we handled badly and struggled to get past half way.

Warrington didn't really take much advantage until Chris Riley was sent over in the right corner on 68 minutes. Briers hit a big conversion off the touchline to bring Warrington back to within two at 14-12.

Moments later Karl Pryce limped off the field. Been plenty of discussion about him on our board this week and although he may have been badly injured for all we know, this will add fuel to those saying he is too soft I'm afraid.

Warrington continued to pile more pressure on Wigan's line helped by an error from Gleeson. He broke down the right but failed to noticed their was no winger and threw the ball into touch. Two penalties were then given away and it looked like the Wire fans would see their side snatch the win but good defence forced a knock on.

Time was now ticking and with two minutes left Wigan sealed the win. They had barely attacked since scoring 26 minutes earlier, but how often do you see sides soak up a lot of defence pressure then get one chance up the other end and score? Sam Tomkins sent Harrison Hansen racing towards the line, he beat the last man to score a great try. Richards was back on to convert and complete a nice nights work in a 20-12 final score.

At full time, those that go away regularly will be used to the players slowly walking up to the Wigan end of the ground and clapping the fans. Paul Deacon however chose to sprint up to our end, on his own, to take the applause. Bit bemusing why he came up so fast on his own. He was either excited or in a big rush to get off the field. He had a decent debut without shining. We didn't complete enough sets for him to be effective with his kicking game.

Sam Tomkins had a great night, causing all sorts of problems with the limited attacking ball we had. Richie Myler on the other hand had about three times more attacking at Wigan but looked pretty ineffective.

So to sum up, great defence but poor, poor handling in attack. Maybe rustiness is still in evidence but I hope we can keep that defence up this year. If we do, we'll be hard to beat!

Reaction to the Action

Coach Michael Maguire: "Right across the board, as a team we are moving in the right direction. The players were competitive in everything they did. Our defence is something we've worked on in the pre season and there were some good signs there. It was a pleasing effort from the boys. I think both teams will look at their performances and for areas to improve. Sean O'Loughlin showed great effort, Amos Roberts played well and Sam Tomkins fought for everything. (Karl Pryce) got knocked out, but he'll be fine. (Paul Deacon) battled to get a start, he was really keen to play. He was going to lead the team out at Saints but with that game being called off and a knock to his wrist he hasn't played , so he was keen to take part. He's obviously going to be a big asset for us."

Team Sheets

- Warrington Position Wigan -
1 Richie Mathers Full Back Cameron Phelps 1
2 Chris Riley Winger Amos Roberts 2
4 Chris Bridge Centre Martin Gleeson 3
23 Ryan Atkins Centre George Carmont 4
3 Matt King Winger Pat Richards 5
6 Lee Briers Stand Off Sam Tomkins 6
7 Richie Myler Scrum Half Thomas Leuluai 7
8 Adrian Morley Prop Stuart Fielden 8
9 Michael Monaghan Hooker Mark Riddell 9
16 Paul Wood Prop Eamon O'Carroll 21
11 Louis Anderson 2nd Row Harrison Hansen 11
12 Ben Westwood 2nd Row Joel Tomkins 12
13 Ben Harrison L.Forward Sean O'Loughlin 13
-
10 Garreth Carvell Substitute Andy Coley 10
14 Mick Higham Substitute Paul Prescott 14
17 Simon Grix Substitute Iafeta Paleaaesina 17
19 Lee Mitchell Substitute Paul Deacon 19
26 David Solomona Substitute Karl Pryce 20
27 Vinnie Anderson Substitute Lee Mossop 23
- - Substitute Darrell Goulding 24
- - Substitute Stuart Howarth* -
- Tony Smith Coach Michael Maguire -
*Stuart Howarth was an unused Substitute

Score Sheet

Warrington Wolves 12 --- Wigan Warriors 20
Tries (2):
Adrian Morley
Chris Riley
--- Tries (4):
Martin Gleeson
Amos Roberts
Lee Mossop
Harrison Hansen
Goals:
Lee Briers 2/2
--- Goals:
Pat Richards 1/3
Amos Roberts 1/1

Scoring and Incident Pattern

4th Minute Warrington 04 Wigan 00 Try: Adrian Morley
- Warrington 06 Wigan 00 Conversion: Lee Briers (1/1)
16th Minute Warrington 06 Wigan 04 Try: Martin Gleeson
- Warrington 06 Wigan 04 P.Richards Missed Conversion (0/1)
19th Minute Warrington 06 Wigan 08 Try: Amos Roberts
- Warrington 06 Wigan 08 P.Richards Missed Conversion (0/2)
Half Time Warrington Wolves 06 Wigan Warriors 08
52nd Minute Warrington 06 Wigan 12 Try: Lee Mossop
- Warrington 06 Wigan 14 Conversion: Amos Roberts (1/1)
68th Minute Warrington 10 Wigan 14 Try: Chris Riley
- Warrington 12 Wigan 14 Conversion: Lee Briers (2/2)
78th Minute Warrington 12 Wigan 18 Try: Harrison Hansen
- Warrington 12 Wigan 20 Conversion: Pat Richards (1/3)
Full Time Warrington Wolves 12 Wigan Warriors 20

Referee

Thierry Alibert (Toulouse, France)

Penalties Conceded

Warrington 6 Wigan 8

Match Attendance

4,622

Weather

Dry but cold wind.

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