WIGAN were trailing 18-0 at half-time to Sydney Roosters in the World Club Challenge.
A whirlwind start by the NRL champions left the Warriors on the ropes after leaking three tries in the opening quarter.
They trailed as early as the third minute as Michael Jennings scored the first of his two tries.
Former Hull FC prop Sam Moa also punched over.
The Warriors had few try-scoring chances, though they did finish the first half with an improved display, preventing the Roosters from extending their advantage.
Skipper Sean O’Loughlin recovered from a hamstring injury in time to play.
Jack Hughes started at second-row, John Bateman was picked ahead of Tony Clubb for a bench spot alongside three props.
Earlier, the nearby park and pubs were coloured with Cherry and White and soundtracked by chants and songs from the travelling fans, before they made their way to the historic Sydney Football Stadium for the first WCC showdown on Australian soil in 20 years.
Trent Robinson’s outfit lost just six of 27 matches last season on their way to the NRL Premiership, and were installed as heavy 1/12 favourites. Wigan were 6/1 underdogs.
Wigan: Bowen; Charnley, Goulding, Sarginson, Burgess; Green, Smith; Flower, McIlorum, Dudson, Hughes, Farrell, O’Loughlin. Subs: Flower, Pettybourne, Crosby, Bateman.
Roosters: Minichiello; Tupou, Jennings, Aubusson, Kenny-Dowall; Maloney, Pearce; Waerea-Hargreaves, Friend, Moa, Cordner, Williams, Nuuausala. Subs: Mortimer, Guerra, Napa, Casty.