NOT many Wire fans saw this result coming at half-time on Friday night.

Instead, they would have been musing over a first-half display which saw their team out-fought, out-thought and beaten for enthusiasm by a severely depleted Hull side.

They were staring an embarrassing defeat in the face and with that, another killer blow to their momentum before Saturday’s all-important Challenge Cup quarter-final against Wigan.

However, one alleged bite and a piece of 19th Century literature was enough to completely change the momentum.

Only Hakim Miloudi will be able to tell us if he deliberately chomped down on the forearm of Chris Hill.

Whether he did or not, it served to fire the Wire skipper up and he duly led from the front in a second half which saw his side undergo a remarkable transformation.

After barely looking like scoring before the break, they rarely looked like missing after it.

Granted, their young and inexperienced hosts were struggling for energy, but Warrington must be given credit for displaying the ruthless edge which became a trademark of their recent 10-game winning run.

It was good to see Tyrone Roberts running the ball and taking on the line more, while Kevin Brown alongside continued to look rock-solid when kicking from hand.

Stefan Ratchford was imperious at full-back and must surely be in contention for the England number one shirt, Harvey Livett continued his superb form and Ben Murdoch-Masila showed the unbridled power that makes him such a handful close to the opposition line.

For the second week in a row, however, The Wire’s play notably improved when Dec Patton was introduced at dummy-half.

He is growing into that role with every game and it was heartening to see him darting out from the back of the ruck, as being reluctant to take the line on is an accusation that has been thrown at his game in the past.

We also saw our first glimpse of Ben Pomeroy back in a Wire shirt and it was an encouraging one off the bench. He looked very sharp and carried the ball strongly, showing he could once again be a handy addition.

While Steve Price will no doubt be pleased with his side’s fightback, he will know they cannot afford as turgid a first-half display when they run into Wigan again on Saturday.

If it is repeated, the Warriors will not be as forgiving as this enthusiastic but busted Hull side were.

However, with key players up front set to return, The Wire should be much more cohesive themselves.


. Victory takes The Wire past their points total for the entirety of last year's regular rounds (20)

. Jack Hughes makes his 200th career appearance.

. The Wire have now won seven home games in a row of all competitions.


Super League, Round 16

Friday, May 25, 2018

Warrington Wolves…30 Hull FC…12

Wolves: Stefan Ratchford; Josh Charnley, Ryan Atkins, Mitch Brown, Tom Lineham; Kevin Brown, Tyrone Roberts; Chris Hill, Daryl Clark, Ben Murdoch-Masila, Jack Hughes, Harvey Livett, Ben Westwood. Subs: George King, Declan Patton, Joe Philbin, Ben Pomeroy.

Hull FC: Jamie Shaul; Jack Logan, Dean Hadley, Cameron Scott, Hakim Miloudi; Jake Connor, Liam Harris; Chris Green, Danny Houghton, Mickey Paea, Sika Manu, Mark Minichiello, Joe Westerman. Subs: Danny Washbrook, Jordan Lane, Brad Fash, Masi Matongo.

Scoring: Hadley try, 7mins, Connor goal, 0-6; Paea try, 13mins, Connor goal, 0-12; Livett try, 46mins, Livett goal, 6-12; K Brown try, 53mins, Livett goal, 12-12; Murdoch-Masila try, 59mins, Livett goal, 18-12; Charnley try, 63mins, Livett goal, 24-12; Atkins try, 70mins, Livett goal, 30-12.

Penalties: Wolves 3 Hull FC 6

Referee: Gareth Hewer

Attendance: 8,646

Top man (Guardian readers’ vote): Stefan Ratchford