Wigan Warriors: Five things we learned from the defeat to Huddersfield Giants
1. Sloppy start set the tone
Wigan were responsible for their own downfall during periods of the game.
Their errors invited pressure from Huddersfield, and they just couldn’t find their rhythm.
This may be down to the team being rotated, but nonetheless it was frustrating.
Some of the regulars in the squad just didn’t have their usual impact and were a bit quiet, when maybe they could’ve stepped up more.
They also lost the battle in the middle and were out-powered by their opponents.
There’s certainly plenty to work on, but by no means was it a disaster of a performance.
2. Second half fight back provided some positives
After the hour mark, the Warriors did find themselves within a slight chance of getting back into it.
They managed to close the gap and really put the pressure on Ian Watson’s side.
While overall it wasn’t a great night, those moments were more reassuring.
It’s something to build on for the players who came into the side for the next time the opportunity arises.
3. Brace for Nicholson shows the benefits of going out on loan
Despite the defeat it was great to see Matty Nicholson go over for a brace on his debut.
The youngster has been building experience while on loan with Newcastle Thunder in the Championship, and he certainly made an impression against Huddersfield.
He put himself in good positions for both tries and looked strong in his short period on the pitch.
At the age of 18, time is on his side, and he will only improve.
There are still plenty of games left to play with Newcastle in the Championship where he will continue to develop.
4. More chances will come the way of the young players
Nicholson wasn’t the only debutant for the Warriors on Thursday night, with Logan Astley also handed his first start for Peet’s side.
He enjoyed a solid enough game but it was pretty quiet.
The half back is certainly an exciting talent, and he has a big fan in Peet, so no doubt more chances will come his way.
Getting his Super League debut under his belt will put him in good stead going forward.
James McDonnell is also still learning while on Leigh and will certainly be back in the Warriors squad at some point again before the end of the season.
5. This game shouldn’t have any impact on the Challenge Cup final
Thursday’s game was the first of two meetings between Wigan and Huddersfield this month, with the next one coming in the Challenge Cup final at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 28.
Whatever happened at the John Smith’s Stadium should have no impact on how the teams will be feeling going into the showpiece game.
Both sides made changes so the result isn’t a reflection of what the outcome would be if the pair had played their first choice sides.
For Huddersfield, a few players may have put themselves in contention for the final, while Wigan will be alert to what they need to fix up.
Apart from that, not too much can be read into the game.