TONY Smith suggested Warrington Wolves’ big performance at St Helens was for teammate Simon Grix, who was stretchered off in the first half.
The 28-year-old suffered a spiral fracture of the tibia and fibula in his left leg during Wolves' 39-12 win at Langtree Park and will undergo surgery in the morning.
And head of coaching and rugby Smith believes his side wanted put in a big effort on Grix’s behalf.
“We’re a bit devastated for Simon,” said Smith. “He can’t take a trick this year – I think that second half was a bit for Simon as well.
“They spoke about it at half time, he’s such a big part of our team and he was going so well. He’s had so many injuries that they wanted to do it for Simon in particular.”
Wolves also lost joint-skipper Ben Westwood in the first half, but Smith is hopeful the powerful back-rower will make a swift return.
“Hopefully Bennie Westwood won’t be as long,” he added. “He’s torn his calf muscle, which he’s done before and got back reasonably quickly, so we’re hopeful Bennie will be back soon.
“We needed to be brave and courageous and hang on to some degree. We lost two subs in the first half, and the middle of the first half.
“It’s a long time to go for the rest of the game with two back-rowers missing.
“We had to do some interchange on the field, some boys who don’t usually play in the middle had to push in the middle and give some boys a rest.
“There was a lot of makeshift stuff, so it was brave and smart and courageous.”
Smith was delighted with his side’s performance, which maintains their unbeaten run against St Helens at Langtree Park.
“It was a really big team and a big pack, a good performance,” he explained. “In many ways it was a smart performance, particularly first half.
“I thought we handled a big team and a big pack, I know they’re without half backs at the moment and have had to do some makeshift and are playing a different way.
“They’re a huge team, big human beings and we had to play in a certain way in order to compete with them after a really good start from them.
“We had to negate some of their strengths and I thought we did that, we talked about it half time that we thought we played smart footy and we needed to do that the second half, which I thought we did.”