IN returning to training ahead of Friday's clash with Wigan Warriors, there was a big elephant in the room for Warrington Wolves.

The start of every new game week involves a review of the previous match.

This time around, it was a pretty painful one as the squad gathered to pick the bones out of their Challenge Cup semi-final defeat to Salford Red Devils.

In this particular week, it is a process of first reflection and ultimately, rectification.

Warrington Guardian:

Steve Price shows his dejection on Saturday. Picture by Mike Boden

"I was gutted, I’m not going to lie," head coach Steve Price said.

"It was gut-wrenching to lose when we were 80 minutes away from Wembley and the chance to defend our title.

"We just didn’t execute the basic fundamentals and I need to take a bit of responsibility too in how I went about things throughout the week.

"We learned some harsh lessons but we get back on the horse to go again on Friday.

"We reflected. We had a really honest review and it wasn’t pretty.

"We realigned ourselves and it's gone now. We can’t take it back.

"What we can control is a really strong performance against Wigan on Friday.

"The boys are champing at the bit to get out there on Friday and right the wrongs."

While the highs of sport are clearly euphoric, the lows are crushing.

Prop Joe Philbin – Warrington born and bred – can testify to that.

Warrington Guardian:

"It ruined my weekend, to be honest," he said.

"That happens anyway when we lose a game but moreso this weekend given what was on the line – we were defending our title.

"I was in an awful mood and watching the game back made it even worse.

"We were in control of the game and we had little lapses of concentration that cost us massively.

"I don’t think Salford had that many opportunities – every half-opportunity they got, they scored through our lack of concentration."

Warrington Guardian:

Joe Philbin helps celebrate Blake Austin's try. Picture by Mike Boden

In this most unique of seasons, though, there is always a chance for redemption just around the corner.

In the shape of their near neighbours, The Wire face opponents who are also reeling from faltering on the biggest stage of this year to date having lost the other last-four clash to Leeds Rhinos.

Warrington Guardian:

Friday's opponents Wigan are also trying to bounce back from Challenge Cup disappointment. Picture by

"It’s disappointing but with the way the season is at the minute, we haven’t got time to dwell on the game as we’re straight back into it against Wigan," Philbin said.

"I think that’s a good thing for us.

"With things that hurt you, growth comes after it. You learn your lessons from it.

"I don’t want to feel how I did last weekend again this season."

Price continued: "We’ve got to put it aside and use it as a good opportunity for growth.

"If we do the basics well and the little things we couldn’t get right on Saturday, I’m confident we’ll put on a strong performance.

"They’re going to be up for the challenge – they will have bruised egos too and it should make for a great game."