Warrington 20 Carlisle 37

THEY may have fought back in the second half, but Warrington were “overwhelmed” before the break by runaway league leaders Carlisle.

The hosts could not live with the North One West table-toppers in the first half as they went into the half-time break 32-5 down.

Despite the game being over, Andy Roberts’ side were impressive after the break and managed to come out of the game with a bonus point that kept them in seventh place.

“We were simply overwhelmed in the first half by a very strong side,” head coach Roberts said.

“We helped them with ineffective tackling but I was pleased at the way the side rediscovered their shape in the second half to earn the bonus point.”

Carlisle arrived at Walton Lea Road having won 15 of their 18 league games – and they set about demonstrating why they are almost certain to be promoted.

After Nathan Beesley was controversially sin-binned, they took full advantage with a brace of tries and two penalties to take control.

The visitors used their heavier pack to dominant the set piece and they duly scored against from a catch-and-drive lineout.

Warrington came back on the attack but Carlisle swooped on a loose ball and ran in from over half way to go 32 points up.

Jonny Evans finished off a driving maul to get the hosts on the board before the break, but the game was as good as over.

Evans scored a dazzling second as he beat four defenders to score in the corner 10 minutes into the second half as Warrington stepped their game up a gear.

A quick-tap penalty then saw Kieron Hughes breach the defence and hand on to Beesley, who passed back for Hughes to finish the move.

Carlisle exploited another Warrington mistake to stretch their total but the hosts still had hope of a bonus point, which was secured when Steve Pilkington twisted over in the corner.

Warrington’s next fixture is on Saturday, February 9, when they visit Manchester.