Warrington made it three wins from three against Salford in a game with two eight-point tries.
Seen as a clash of styles between the big and powerful Wolves and the expansive Salford Red Devils and that was shown early as the first tackle saw the Wolves rip into Salford in defence but soon the expansive Red Devils had Warrington chasing shadows. A warning shot from Salford but good defence from the Wolves.
Warrington began to dominate down the middle and building pressure through the middle before a lovely George Williams kick was grounded by Ben Currie.
Warrington loanee Ellis Longstaff was on debut for Salford Red Devils and backed up after a lovely short side play released Joe Burgess. Burgess found Longstaff to score 11 minutes into his debut.
A great intercept from Ken Sio as he clung to the ball from George Williams and support from Ryan Brierley coupled with the fullback’s pace saw the Red Devils race away and score to give Salford the lead.
The Red Devils were on a roll and they rolled down field with a great show and go and bump from prop Tyler Dupree as he gave the Warrington pack as good as they gave. After this break, Marc Sneyd snuck through a gap and touched down besides the posts.
The Wolves needed a score at the start of the second half and after havoc was created down the right after a long George Williams pass, another pass out wide gave Ashton the space he needed for an acrobatic finish in the corner.
It looked certain that Warrington would score straight after that Ashton try when Currie patted back a kick to Ashton and he darted over but Brodie Croft held him up. Then the Red Deviks stood up to repel repeat sets of pressure.
After busting through the middle of the Salford defence, holding down gave Warrington a penalty and saw Ryan Brierley sin binned. More penalties followed until Tom Mikaele burrowed over under the sticks for a simple score.
Warrington looked set to take the lead when Daryl Clark broke and found Matt Dufty in support but the usually trustworthy fullback dropped the pass.
Warrington then scored a try of the season contender as a series of offloads allowed Matty Ashton some space. He darted back inside and offloaded to George Williams. Williams kicked wide and found Josh Thewlis to score. That levelled matters, Ratchford missed the conversion but that wasn’t important because he was given a second crack at it as Tyler Dupree was penalised in the act of scoring creating an eight-point try. Thus Ratchford made it 22-20 making Marc Sneyd’s penalty miss crucial.
Warrington took a more commanding lead as George Williams jinked through the Salford defence after a scrum to speed to the line.
Another eight point try came after a lovely offload from some top Peter Mata’utia footwork allowed Matt Dufty to dive over but as he was hit in the face by Kallum Watkins as he attempted to tackle him an eight point try was given.
Despite the big calls, it was a game that showed the character of the Warrington Wolves in 2023 which appears very different to 2022.
This led England skipper Sam Tomkins to suggest it could be their year.
He took to Twitter to say:
“Warrington of 2022 would never have got themselves into a position to win this from 14 points down!
“Is it their year?”
Warrington of 2022 would never have got themselves into a position to win this from 14 points down!
Is it their year?#SkySportsRL
— sam tomkins (@samtomkins1) March 2, 2023