OLD Trafford has not been a happy hunting ground for The Wire as a Super League title continues to evade them.

Here, we look back at Wolves' three previous Grand Final visits to the Theatre of Dreams as they came so close to breaking their title duck.

2012, Warrington 18 Leeds Rhinos 26

With the first championship for 57 years and a golden league and cup double at stake, the Wolves did not do what they needed to do on a night when they needed to do it most - Kick well, chase strong, finish sets neatly, take any chances that come along.

After Richie Myler opened the scoring early on, the Rhinos began to take control of the game and opened up a 14-6 lead. Warrington hit back however, with tries from Joel Monaghan and Ryan Atkins restoring Wire’s lead.

Momentum changed again soon after, with Michael Monaghan throwing a long pass that would have set Stefan Ratchford free far too high, and through a series of bad luck, poor decision making, handling errors and costly penalties, Wolves rarely had possession in Leeds’ half of the field again.

After spending 12 minutes heroically defending deep inside their own half, most of it on their own try line, Leeds bagged the lead through Carl Ablett. Ryan Hall added another late try, with Kevin Sinfield converting from the touchline to ultimately make the game safe.

Interesting notes:

• Most points Wolves have scored in a Championship final.

• Wolves’ first Super League Grand Final.

• First loss to a Yorkshire team in any cup final since 1960/61, when Wolves also lost to Leeds in the Championship Final.

Adrian Morley became the oldest player to appear in a Grand Final, aged 35 and 149 days.

• Kevin Sinfield won the Harry Sunderland Trophy for the second time.

Wolves: Brett Hodgson; Joel Monaghan, Stefan Ratchford, Ryan Atkins, Chris Riley; Lee Briers, Richie Myler; Chris Hill, Mickey Higham, Ben Harrison, Ben Westwood, Trent Waterhouse, Simon Grix. Subs: Adrian Morley, Michael Monaghan, Paul Wood, Mike Cooper.

Tries: Myler, J Monaghan, Atkins.

Goals: Hodgson (3).

Rhinos: Zak Hardaker; Ben Jones-Bishop, Kallum Watkins, Carl Ablett, Ryan Hall; Danny McGuire, Kevin Sinfield; Kylie Leuluai, Rob Burrow, Jamie Peacock, Jamie Jones-Buchanan, Brett Delaney, Ryan Bailey. Subs: Ian Kirke, Darrell Griffin, Stevie Ward, Shaun Lunt.

Tries: Sinfield, Jones-Bishop, Ablett, Hall.

Goals: Sinfield (5).

Referee: Richard Silverwood.

Attendance: 70,676.

Top man: Richie Myler.

Wire players and coach Tony Smith are disconsolate after losing the 2012 Grand Final to Leeds. Picture by Mike Boden

2013, Warrington Wolves 16 Wigan Warriors 30

Warrington were in full control of the 2013 final, holding a 16-2 lead after 35 minutes, however the loss of Joel Monaghan, Stefan Ratchford and Ben Harrison to injury, Gareth Carvell playing on with a broken rib, and Simon Grix, Ben Westwood and Chris Hill also carrying knocks eventually took its toll.

All of this happened during a horrific 17-minute period either side of half time; with the Warriors taking full advantage of the Wolves woe and leading 18-16.

The Wolves courageously hung in for 10 minutes, however Harry Sunderland Trophy winner Blake Green – the Wigan stand off who bruisingly survived Ben Westwood’s second-minute punch – finally broke Wolves’ hearts 11 minutes from time, when he stepped off his right foot to elude Adrian Morley’s tackle to touch down.

With everything that occurred on the night, they were in a state that no team could have prepared for, and although Warrington’s players would have liked to have handled what was thrown at them better, the majority of other sides would have crumbled.

Interesting notes:

• Wolves’ first loss to Wigan since Challenge Cup quarter-final defeat in 2011.

• Largest comeback by the eventual winners in a Super League Grand Final.

• Australian Joel Monaghan’s try was his 31st of the season, making it his best tally in any one campaign on either side of the world at that time.

• Wolves had only won one major final in 11 meetings with Wigan at this point.

• Attendance was lowest for a Grand Final at Old Trafford since 2009, when 3,000 less watched St Helens and Leeds Rhinos contest for the title for the third successive year.

• At 36 years and 148 days old, Adrian Morley was the oldest player to have competed in the Grand Final.

• Paul Wood’s 300th Super League appearance in primrose and blue.

Wolves: Stefan Ratchford; Joel Monaghan, Chris Bridge, Ryan Atkins, Chris Riley; Lee Briers, Richie Myler; Paul Wood, Mickey Higham, Chris Hill, Ben Westwood, Simon Grix, Ben Harrison. Subs: Adrian Morley, Michael Monaghan, Gareth Carvell, Mike Cooper.

Tries: Monaghan, Grix, Westwood.

Goals: Ratchford (2).

Warriors: Sam Tomkins; Josh Charnley, Darrell Goulding, Iain Thornley, Pat Richards; Blake Green, Matty Smith; Gil Dudson, Michael McIlorum, Lee Mossop, Harrison Hansen, Liam Farrell, Sean O'Loughlin. Subs: Jack Hughes, Ben Flower, Scott Taylor, Dominic Crosby.

Tries: Goulding, McIlorum, Charnley, Green, Richards.

Goals: Richards (5).

Referee: Richard Silverwood.

Attendance: 66,281.

Top Man: Ben Westwood.

Chris Bridge evades Blake Green during the 2013 Grand Final. Picture by Mike Boden

2016, Warrington Wolves 6 Wigan Warriors 12

In the 2016 Grand Final, three big plays went against the Wolves, with Ryan Atkins being pulled back by the referee for being narrowly offside when a score looked likely, a Warrington try being chalked off by the video referee whilst 6-2 up for a knock on, and Dan Sarginson pulling off a superb tackle to deny Kurt Gidley late on.

Dec Patton repaid the faith shown in him by Tony Smith, who selected him at stand-off rather than picking the returning Chris Sandow, by scoring the Wolves opener with a fantastic show-and-go.

The Warriors however fought back through two pieces of genuine quality. George Williams delivered a clever short ball to send Liam Farrell through a hole, who then set up Oliver Gildart to score, and now-wolf Josh Charley produced a sublime finish to latch onto a Dan Sarginson grubber and touchdown just before the dead ball line.

Interesting notes:

• Third Grand Final defeat in five years for The Wire.

• Oliver Gildart’s try was the 100th scored in Super League Grand Finals.

• Tony Smith set a record with six Grand Final appearances as a coach (three for Wolves, three for Leeds Rhinos).

Wolves: Stefan Ratchford; Tom Lineham, Rhys Evans, Ryan Atkins, Matty Russell; Kurt Gidley, Declan Patton; Chris Hill, Daryl Clark, Ashton Sims, Sam Wilde, Jack Hughes, Joe Westerman. Subs: Toby King, George King, Chris Sandow, Ryan Bailey.

Try: Patton

Goal: Patton

Warriors: Dan Sarginson; Josh Charnley, Anthony Gelling, Oliver Gildart, Lewis Tierney; George Williams, Matty Smith; Frank-Paul Nuuausala, Sam Powell, Ben Flower, John Bateman, Liam Farrell, Willie Isa. Subs: Taulima Tautai, Ryan Sutton, Dom Crosby, Sean O’Loughlin.

Tries: Gildart, Charnley

Goals: Smith (2)

Referee: Robert Hicks.

Attendance: 70,202.

Top man: Stefan Ratchford

Dec Patton touches down for the 2016 Grand Final's opening try. Picture by Mike Boden