Warrington thumped by St Helens to continue their miserable start to the season

Andy Hampson
Getty

Warrington's dismal start to the Betfred Super League season continued as they crashed to a sixth successive defeat with a 31-6 hammering at St Helens.

The result leaves Wolves coach Tony Smith under considerable pressure with his side yet to win a match in the competition.

Saints blew away their own recent problems with Adam Swift scoring twice and Zeb Taia, Jack Owens and Alex Walmsley also crossing in a dominant display at the Totally Wicked Stadium.

Three quickfire tries late in the first half swung the game decisively in Saints' favour with Warrington's only touchdown coming from Kurt Gidley early in the second half.

The teams went into the game 10th and 12th in the table but there was a much greater difference in their performances on the field.

Saints looked full of confidence, with fit-again Matty Smith back pulling the strings in his first outing since rejoining the club, while the Wolves showed little.

The visitors hardly threatened in the first half and were perhaps fortunate Saints failed to make the most of their early possession.

Saints had tries by Owens and Swift, for a knock-on and marginal forward pass respectively, ruled out before finally taking the lead after 30 minutes.

The opener came from a Warrington mistake as Matty Russell, who earlier made a vital interception as Jon Wilkin powered forward, failed to deal with a James Roby kick and Taia pounced.

Further damage was quickly inflicted as a pinpoint kick from Smith created a chance that Owens snapped up in the corner.

When Mark Percival then broke from the restart to send Swift over for a third try in just six minutes, it seemed the Wolves were on the ropes.

With Percival converting all three tries, Smith's men went in trailing 18-0 at the break and in urgent need of a lift.

That came within three minutes of the restart as the Wolves finally managed to make some ground and Gidley found a way over by the posts.

Stefan Ratchford, on his return from injury, converted and Saints seemed sufficiently worried about a fightback to kick for goal twice when awarded penalties. Percival landed one of them.

That punctured any momentum Warrington were trying to build and luck also deserted them as a miskick by Wilkin somehow bobbled out into touch for an unintended 40-20.

Saints upped the pressure and another Wilkin kick, this time accurate, teed up Swift's second.

That made the result safe before a Smith drop goal and converted late Walmsley try added gloss to the scoreline.

Elsewhere in the Super League, Leeds Rhino’s beat Huddersfield Giants 28-12, while Widnes were hammered 46-10 at home to Salford Red Devils and Hull edged out Wigan 22-20.

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