Match Report

Thursday 20th July 2017, 20:00
Super League - Round: 23

Warrington Wolves

(4) 22

Warrington Wolves
VS.

Widnes Vikings

6 (6)

Widnes Vikings

4 Tries

Matty Russell 2, Peta Hiku, Kevin Brown,

TRIES

Tries 1

Joe Mellor,

3 Goals

Stefan Ratchford 3,

GOALS

Goals 1

Stefan Marsh,

0 D Goals

 

D. GOALS

D Goals 0

 

Attendance:   Official: R Hicks  Venue: Halliwell Jones Stadium

Full Time Report

Two tries from winger Matty Russell helped Warrington Wolves claim their third victory of the season against Widnes Vikings thanks to a strong second-half display at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.

Warrington trailed 6-4 at half-time against their local rivals but Russell's double and further tries from Kevin Brown and Peta Hiku plus three goals from Stefan Ratchford saw the Wolves finish the regular season with a third straight win.

With both sides already consigned to the Qualifiers, the result had little consequence to the final standings.

But the next time these rivals meet the stakes will be much higher as they will be scrapping for their Betfred Super League lives.

Joe Mellor's excellent efforts for the Vikings were rewarded with a 15th-minute try which Stefan Marsh converted but that was their only score of the night.

Warrington head coach Tony Smith said: "It was a good workout and timely for us. We were disjointed in the first half which was understandable with another new half-back combination this week which took a bit of coming round to.

"I thought we were a bit rusty the way we were playing in the first half and we were rushing things and trying to throw passes when we didn't need to instead of taking control of the ball and maybe taking the tackle and putting on a better play. But we got hold of things in the second half and our defence also got better which enabled us to do more with the ball and come up with some good combinations.

"I thought our two centres were terrific. Ryan Atkins was unbelievably strong and Peta Hiku came up with some terrific plays and both were outstanding."

On Ben Currie, who failed to return for the second half, Smith added: "Ben's knee's okay. He got a tweak but he's got some ice and strapping on it to keep it from swelling. But the medics are not too concerned at the moment.

"It was a bit of a scare for him and we opted not to play him in the second half, it was not worth the risk, so we'll look after him and the early indications are we're pretty confident he will be okay for the Middle 8s."

Widnes boss Denis Betts said: "Overall I'm disappointed we didn't stay in the fight. You want to win these games and be successful moving forward but you want to respect the process that is going to keep us in Super League which we failed to do in the second half.

"We were patchy again. It was a great 40 minutes and we probably could have asked a few more questions with some of our kicks but we were solid which we haven't been over the last couple of weeks.

"We now have a two-week break and then have seven games in a mini-season and it gives us the chance to right a couple of wrongs when we feel we have let ourselves down by losing close games.

"The beauty of the Qualifiers is you start on zero like everybody else. You are playing different teams in Championship sides who can throw different things at you.

"It's a completely different competition which has its own anxieties and stresses which are completely different to the normal league."