Smith: Consistency of form
(photo courtesy of swpix.com)
Wolves head of coaching and rugby Tony Smith comments on last week's performance, the return of Bridge and O'Brien and looks ahead to tonight's game against Salford.
"We were disappointed with probably the first half hour of the game - I felt that Saints took some control of it, took advantage of the situations we gave them and all credit to them. Even after that they defended very well - I thought both teams competed pretty well after that period though just unfortunate they'd posted points on us. We often do that to other teams and we've got to accept that it may happen to us unless we're very good at what we're doing at the time. We paid a heavy price for a poor start and poor control of the game."
Centre Chris Bridge pulled a Wolves' shirt on for the first time this season last weekend and Tony was pleased with his performance.
"I thought he looked smart and good on his feet. He looked like he was running freely and took advantage of a couple of situations himself - and he came through unscathed. He gives us more depth in the squad and more attack which we probably need at the moment. Some of our attack hasn't been at the top of its game so hopefully we can find some of that and Chris can contribute too."
Young Gareth O'Brien has also returned to the fold following a month's loan spell at Castleford. Another player who will provide the team with more options across the board.
"He's a high quality young player. I have a lot of time for Gaz. He certainly gives us more options and the capability to shuffle things around slightly if we need to. I thought he did a great job for Cas in the couple of games he was there, however, he was probably limited in game time because of the return of Rangi Chase. He gives us more options and at the moment we've had quite a few people injured so it's nice to get the numbers back particularly leading up to the next little period where Easter isn't far away and is a very testing time for depth of squad."
On the current injury situation he added: "Harrison and Waterhouse won't make this week but will be available next week. Moz is still doing rehab from his operation but it's going well and will hopefully be closer to the two month mark rather than three month. Lee Briers has also had some response to some treatment that he's had but in terms of time frame he's not going to be back in the next couple of weeks."
This week will see the team make the short journey to Salford for round seven with the Reds under caretaker coach Alan Hunte.
"Alan was a terrific player and a player who I admired. He certainly did a great job for both clubs in that respect...Last week they (Salford) were very spirited against a very good Wakefield team and they did well to get a draw out of that game. We are expecting another very spirited performance from them tonight.
"They are like everyone else, not totally satisfied with their form overall. They've had some setbacks right from the word go but at the same time they are recruiting players and have had some recent additions - they are keen to get their season rolling but hopefully that won't be this weekend. Saying that we're concentrating on what we need to do and the areas we need to work on to try and find some consistency of form ourselves."
Salford City Reds v Warrington Wolves, Tonight, 8pm, Salford City Stadium
15, Mar, 2013