St Helens 32 Warrington Wolves 24 (Half-time 18-6)
Reigning Grand Final winners St Helens took another step towards retaining their title this season, with their unbeaten record in the #Super League remaining intact, after the visit of third-placed Warrington Wolves to Langtree Park yesterday evening. They have now moved four points clear of second-placed Leeds Rhinos ahead of the weekend's other matches, after their 32-24 success over the Wolves gave them a sixth successive victory in the new campaign. They had looked to be cruising to a comfortable triumph as the game edged towards its conclusion, only for the visitors to stage a late come back and close to within one score. Warrington's hopes were finally ended when Travis Burns kicked a two-point penalty to secure the win for Keiron Cunningham's side.
Saints seem to have recovered admirably well this campaign, from the mauling they took in the World Club Challenge at the hands of the South Sydney Rabbitohs only last month. Indeed that 39-0 hammering on their home patch seems to have spurred them on to greater heights in the league.
They again looked convincing during the first-half against the Wolves, moving into an 18-6 lead at the interval. A hat-trick of tries from Joe Greenwood, Jon Wilkin and Adam Swift seemed to have put them completely in control, as Warrington could only respond with a solitary try from ex- Castleford hooker Daryl Clark, the recipient of the prestigious 'Steve Prescott Man of Steel' award last year. Clark's try had briefly drawn the visitors level, before the home side moved clear by the break.
After the break, the deficit was reduced when Micky Higham crossed the home side's line for a try. Saints extended their advantage thereafter though, with the scores for Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook and winger Tommy Makinson looking to have made the game safe as the match entered the final ten minutes.
The Wolves thought otherwise though and staged a spirited effort to pull themselves back into the contest, with a charge-down allowing Kevin Penny in for a score and then Chris Hill eased his way through the defence to ensure that Saints could not rest totally easy for the final few minutes. They were to get no closer to the home side though, as six points became an eight point lead, with the crucial Burns penalty right at the death. It capped a very successful display for the Saints' kicker, as he missed none of the try conversions for his side, besides adding the match-clinching penalty.
St Helens are now just two wins behind the eight victories that they began last season's Super League campaign with and #Rugby league fans know how well that turned out for them. They may have lost Greenwood for a while though, as he went off during the match with an injury that is believed to be a possible broken arm.