Daryl Powell says he knew Sky Sports would show opening game as he notes the pressure heaped on him by pundits

Daryl Powell will be the happiest man in rugby league tonight after his Warrington Wolves side thumped Leeds Rhinos 42-10 to start the season.

It was the perfect way to do away with the pressure that had been mounting on him after the Wolves’ 11th placed finish in 2022 and all the recruitment he had done to remedy the situation.

After the game, Powell reflected on the performance:

“The first half was as dominant as you will see. We controlled the whole 40 minutes. Defensively we were class and with the ball we were smart, we kicked well our middle unit was phenomenal,” he said on Sky Sports.

“In the second half we were a little bit loose as we changed positions.”

He noted the lose of former Wigan Warriors man Matty Nicholson and praised James Harrison, who was outstanding, for the way he ameliorated the impact of his loss:

“We lost Matty Nicholson, we had to shift things around with James Harrison going to the backrow. He was great tonight, he nearly did 80 minutes.

“It was just a start and a good one.”

It was fellow forward Paul Vaughan who got the Man of the Match.

However, Powell was proud of all of his forwards on the night:

“He’s a great engine, James Harrison pushed him well. We have some strong middles, Joe Bullock did really well and guys like Sam Kasiano.”

Asked what the future holds for the Wolves in 2023, Powell was keen not to get carried away but did note that he knew Sky would show the game tonight given the pressure he was under:

“We’ve got a great side. You can’t go shouting it from the rooftops. We have a great opportunity to grow as a team.

“We enjoyed that tonight and we have a chance to grow. I thought we did some phenomenal things. I knew Sky was going to put us here, everyone goes looking for pressure don’t they.”

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