OUR total recall of Warrington Wolves’ record-breaking 2011 Super League season continues into the campaign’s second month…
Warrington Wolves…40 Leeds Rhinos…24
IT is not often that a relatively inexperienced 18-year-old makes such an impact on his full Super League debut.
Rhys Evans’ mature performance alongside Chris Riley on the left flank against Leeds would not have come as a surprise to those who follow the club’s every move.
The Welsh-born centre was simply showing the Halliwell Jones crowd a glimpse of the talent that has made him the subject of many excited whispers from within the camp.
What is clear from his performance is that Evans is ready for Super League, despite his age.
He took his try brilliantly, helped to create the spectacular effort finished off by Richie Myler and made smart options in defence. Evans was excellent, but he was not on his own.
The whole team deserve credit for their dominant performance against one of the game’s giants, punishing the visitors’ errors mercilessly.
The leadership of Lee Briers and Michael Monaghan as they directed Wolves around the pitch was essential, especially after the loss of captain Adrian Morley early in the first half.
His loss with a knee injury marked Wolves’ shakiest period in the opening 40 minutes, but the lively Paul Wood more than made up for his disappearance.
The prop gave an industrious performance, tackling well and showing that it is not only David Solomona that can offer some breathtaking offloads.
And, of course, there is Ben Westwood.
When reporters ask coach Tony Smith who he thought stood out, there is always one name at the tip of his tongue.
Westwood was once again the subject of Smith’s admiration after tireless efforts.
Westwood provided the foundation for Wolves to follow up last year’s Challenge Cup victory with another comfortable defeat of Super League’s former champions.
Eighteen-year-old centre Rhys Evans makes his full Wolves Super League debut, scoring his side’s first try.
Tony Smith’s first Super League victory over his old club.
Leeds’ Ben Cross is given a one-match ban for his late tackle on Richie Myler.
With this win Wolves became the joint-owners of Super League XVI’s consecutive victories record with three, along with Castleford Tigers.
Wolves: Brett Hodgson (6g); Chris Riley (1t), Matty Blythe, Rhys Evans (1t), Joel Monaghan (1t); Lee Briers (1t), Richie Myler (1t); Adrian Morley, Michael Monaghan, Garreth Carvell, Ben Westwood, David Solomona, Ben Harrison. Subs: Paul Wood, Jon Clarke, Simon Grix (1t), Mickey Higham (1t)
Rhinos: Brent Webb (1t); Lee Smith, Kallum Watkins (1t), Keith Senior, Ryan Hall (2t); Kevin Sinfield (4g), Rob Burrow; Luke Burgess, Danny Buderus, Jamie Jones-Buchanan, Ali Lauitiiti, Weller Hauraki, Carl Ablett. Subs: Ben Jones-Bishop, Ben Cross, Chris Clarkson, Ian Kirke
Referee: Steve Ganson