Match Report: Warrington 16 Wigan 8
Posted by Bilko on May 23 2009 - 11:54
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Warrington Wolves v Wigan Warriors - Engage Super League XIV Round 14.
Friday 22nd May 2009. Kick Off 8:00pm at Halliwell Jones Stadium.

Match Report

Well I commented in my Match Preview that I didn't fancy Wigan to win this one because I expected it to be tight and Wigan just do not know how to win tight games. It panned out just as I expected.

Wigan suffered a late blow going into the game with Tim Smith flying home to Australia for family reasons. Phil Bailey and George Carmont were also absent injured so that meant recalls for Sam Tomkins, Shaun Ainscough and Harrison Hansen.

Wigan made a great start to this match with Pat Richards' kick off forcing a Warrington drop out. This triggered a 9 minute spell of possession for the Warriors but we could only manage one try.

That try came in the 4th minute when a grubber from Sam Tomkins was touched down by Cameron Phelps. Richards converted to make it 6-0.

Another kick, this time a bomb, got Wigan over the line again but Amos Roberts' touch down was chalked off by video ref Ian Smith after he deemed Pat Richards had knocked on in leaping for the ball. Fair call I thought. Joel Tomkins was also denied after being held up over the line by Richard Mathers.

Eventually, after finally getting some ball to play with, Warrington began to pressure the Wigan line but we defended quite well. Wigan weren't helping themselves with Martin Gleeson and Sean O'Loughlin both knocking on well inside our own half. This almost saw Warrington score but Matt King couldn't take a bomb from Lee Briers.

He made up for that though on 35 minutes when another bomb from Briers saw him leap above Shaun Ainscough to score. Chris Bridge missed the extras so Wigan went into half time with a narrow 6-4 lead.

Wigan increased that lead to 8-4 with a penalty goal on 51 minutes but it was the re-introduction of Garreth Carvell and Adrian Morley off the bench that swung this game Warrington's way. Wigan kept conceding penalties to which Lee Briers made great distance on when finding touch. It was tap penalty in front of the sticks that would lead to them scoring. Simon Grix out wide beat Amos Roberts and got Chris Riley over for the try. Bridge converted to make it 10-8 to Warrington.

Then on 66 minutes Michael Monaghan won the match by scoring a nice individual try to which Bridge converted to make it 16-8.

Wigan never came close to mounting a comeback. The pack was defeated and our last tackle kicking was again pretty dire. No direction and rarely did they split the full back and winger. Our last tackle options have been poor all season. We did defend quite well I thought but the pressure of conceding penalties will always create too much pressure.

So this was another tight defeat which we could have nicked but again no one is standing up to take control. Lee Briers and Michael Monaghan certainly did that for Warrington. Briers is the most wasted talent ever in my lifetime watching rugby league but he still leads his side around the park. Wigan lack this and that's why we continue to struggle.

Reaction to the Action

Brian Noble: "We have had two tough nights at the office and it's disappointing we don't come out the right side of the scoreboard. I thought we were in a position to win both games. We lacked the ball going our way in the second half, we got to the right end of the field when it was 10-8 and from then on in we made a mistake, gave away a couple of penalties and it was uphill from there on. We didn't finish the game as we would have liked to. The effort is really manful and we need to turn that effort into some smart plays. We lacked a little bit of composure just relying on a Gareth Hock or a Thomas Leuluai to make a break and we need to buy into the smartness of teamwork in attack. Our defence was pretty good. In the main our effort is great.  I am disappointed that we have come away without the two points. We need to be smarter with the ball in attack. We've not had enough of the ball at the right end of the field. An 8-1 penalty count in the second half played a part, I am pretty sure we should have had some at pivotal times and we didn't get them. We lost (Tim Smith) late in the day, it was a big loss but we should have been better to cope with it."

Warrington coach Tony Smith: "We still had some errors in us but there was much more energy and enthusiasm in our performance. Defensively I thought we were very good on the back of starting a game with six sets on your own line. I challenge the average person to tackle for eight minutes. I get tired thinking about it. I thought we were the dominant team apart from that first eight minutes. The only scary moments I felt we had were from kicks and that's saying something about our defence. Wigan have got some terrific attacking players so it was a big effort and we're pleased to get through that one. We do feel we are building but we've got a way to go. (Adrian Morley is) leading like a man possessed. He was disappointed that he had to sit out a couple of weeks recently with a broken hand and I think he's making up for it. He's just a machine. I thought our whole forward pack were very good defensively."

Team Sheets

- Warrington Position Wigan -
30 Richard Mathers Full Back Pat Richards 5
19 Chris Riley Winger Amos Roberts 2
25 Chris Bridge Centre Martin Gleeson 22
20 Simon Grix Centre Cameron Phelps 21
4 Matt King Winger Shaun Ainscough 28
6 Lee Briers Stand Off Sam Tomkins 25
7 Michael Monaghan Scrum Half Thomas Leuluai 7
8 Adrian Morley Prop Stuart Fielden 8
9 Jon Clarke Hooker Mike McIlorum 17
10 Garreth Carvell Prop Andy Coley 15
11 Louis Anderson 2nd Row Gareth Hock 11
12 Ben Westwood 2nd Row Joel Tomkins 14
13 Vinnie Anderson L.Forward Sean O'Loughlin 13
- - - - -
10 Paul Rauhihi Substitute Mark Riddell 9
14 Mick Higham Substitute Iafeta Paleaaesina 10
16 Paul Wood Substitute Harrison Hansen 16
24 Ben Harrison Substitute Paul Prescott 19

Score Sheet

Warrington Wolves 16 --- Wigan Warriors 08
Tries (3):
Matt King
Chris Riley
Michael Monaghan
--- Tries (1):
Cameron Phelps
Chris Bridge 2/3
--- Goals:
Pat Richards 2/2

Scoring and Incident Pattern

4th Minute Warrington 00 Wigan 04 Try: Cameron Phelps
- Warrington 00 Wigan 06 Conversion: Pat Richards (1/1)
35th Minute Warrington 04 Wigan 06 Try: Matt King
- Warrington 04 Wigan 06 C.Bridge Missed Conversion (0/1)
Half Time Warrington Wolves 04 Wigan Warriors 06
49th Minute Warrington 04 Wigan 08 Penalty Goal: Pat Richards (2/2)
56th Minute Warrington 08 Wigan 08 Try: Chris Riley
- Warrington 10 Wigan 08 Conversion: Chris Bridge (1/2)
65th Minute Warrington 14 Wigan 08 Try: Michael Monaghan
- Warrington 16 Wigan 08 Conversion: Chris Bridge (2/3)
Full Time Warrington Wolves 16 Wigan 08


Ben Thaler (Wakefield)

Penalties Conceded

Warrington 5 Wigan 11

Video Referee

Ian Smith (Oldham)

Match Attendance





League Table at Conclusion of Super League 14 Round 14

- Team P W D L F A Diff Pts
1 St Helens 14 11 0 3 411 256 +155 22
2 Hull Kingston Rovers 14 10 1 3 356 235 +121 21
3 Leeds Rhinos 14 10 0 4 349 205 +144 20
4 Huddersfield Giants 14 9 0 5 348 243 +105 18
5 Harlequins 13 8 0 5 323 253 +70 16
6 Hull FC 14 7 0 7 288 304 -16 14
7 Castleford Tigers 14 7 0 7 317 337 -20 14
8 Wakefield Wildcats 14 7 0 7 304 331 -27 14
9 Wigan Warriors 15 6 0 9 340 303 +37 12
10 Warrington Wolves 14 6 0 8 311 374 -63 12
11 Catalans Dragons 14 5 0 9 320 388 -68 10
12 Salford City Reds 14 5 0 9 234 399 -165 10
13 Bradford Bulls 13 4 1 8 269 343 -74 9
14 Celtic Crusaders 13 1 0 12 206 405 -199 2

Round 14 Results
Fri 22 May Hull Kingston Rovers 16 Castleford Tigers 6 8,104
Fri 22 May St Helens 22 Harlequins 12 9,359
Fri 22 May Salford City Reds 18 Bradford Bulls 10 4,383
Fri 22 May Warrington Wolves 16 Wigan Warriors 8 10,718
Sat 23 May Celtic Crusaders 18 Catalan Dragons 30 2,927
Sun 24 May Wakefield Wildcats 6 Huddersfield Giants 54 5,037
Tue 26 May Leeds Rhinos 46 Hull FC 16 15,929