Smith: Off-the-cuff attack is working for us

Matty Smith admits their ad-lib plays have re-energized Wigan's attack.

Friday, 30th September 2016, 11:34 am
Updated Wednesday, 5th October 2016, 2:41 pm
Matty Smith crosses for one of his two tries last week

The Warriors’ struggle to score points been a persistent source of frustration in a season when they have clawed their way into the semi-finals.

They have injected life into a spluttering attack in their last two games, scoring 12 tries in their last 100 minutes of play.

Their golden-streak included four tries in the final 20 minutes against Warrington - in one of the games of the season - as well as a six-try haul in the opening half last week, as they destroyed Catalans 48-24.

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And ahead of tonight’s high-stakes clash with Hull FC, Smith said: “We’re known as a structured side, aren’t we?

“But the off-the-cuff stuff seems to be working more than the structure at the minute.

“We know we’ve got players who can win games.

“It’s alright keep saying (the attack will click), but actions are bigger, and over the last four weeks we’ve played better.

“We’re gradually getting there, we’re not the finished article - and without doubt we have to be even better against a tough Hull FC side.”

Whether by accident or design, Wigan appear to be peaking for the business end of the season.

Wins at Hull FC and Warrington were followed by the free-scoring display a week ago, which came despite the disruption of losing skipper Sean O’Loughlin minutes before kick-off.

He has all-but been ruled out for the rest of the season, along with full-back Sam Tomkins.

Their injury-list features eight front-line players while prop Ben Flower is suspended, forcing Shaun Wane to delve into their academy ranks - four of his 19-man squad for tonight’s match only made their debuts this year.

And Smith admits progressing to Old Trafford, and winning, would mark the greatest achievement of a career which included the 2013 double and an England victory against New Zealand.

He said: “For me it would be the biggest win.

“We’ve been written off a lot of times - and rightly so, we’ve not performed - but with the injuries we’ve got, and the players we’ve lost... they are big players to lose in the closing stages of a season.

“To come out on top at this stage would be a great achievement - and one that is definitely there for us to take.

“We’ve used a lot of young lads, we’ve given out more debuts than anyone else.

“The squad has been rotated quite a bit but we’ve found a way to win.

“We’ve played top teams with those players out and won, so we know there’s a belief there and if we turn up with the right attitude we can beat anyone.

“It’s coming together at the right time.”

Smith, who kicked a perfect eight goals from as many attempts last week, has hosed down speculation of a move to St Helens.

But if the switch goes ahead - as expected - it would make tonight his final game at the DW as a Wigan player.