AS a warm-up game for the new season, Saturday’s clash with Wigan Warriors probably could not have gone much better.
Warrington Wolves achieved a 20-0 win, came through with only minor bumps and bruises to their players and gave head of coaching and rugby Tony Smith plenty to feel positive about ahead of this Sunday’s visit by Castleford Tigers in Super League round one.
It rewarded the efforts of the 70+ volunteers to clear the pitch of snow so that Ben Westwood’s Testimonial game could go ahead.
“It was a very pleasing workout,” said Smith.
“I was very pleased with many aspects.
“They were tough and testing conditions and I thought it was pleasing where the game was played - only a few passages of play were in our own half.
“It showed some smartness about playing the conditions and playing in the right part of the field with the right sort of patience too, most of the time.
“We made a few errors but I don’t mind players ‘going for it a bit’ as long as they do it in the right sort of areas and at the right sort of times, and I thought we did that most of the time.
“I thought we were really sharp. Being able to do the warm-weather training gives you that sharpness and we saw some great attitude during our week in Tenerife.
“You’re able to dig your toes in and let rip rather than trudging up and down on boggy ground.
“They did a lot of that in Tenerife and I think we brought some of that sharpness back with us.
“Hopefully we can keep them sharp throughout the season - that’s the real test, keeping people on their toes.”