Wigan Warriors: Five things we learned from the victory over Salford Red Devils (A)
Amos Wynn reflects on the key talking points from Wigan Warriors’ 30-12 victory over Salford Red Devils at the AJ Bell Stadium.
1. Wigan pulled away after a tight first half
Similar to last week’s game against Castleford, the Warriors came out strong in the second half.
They looked really dominant, and heaped the pressure on Salford.
Nonetheless, unlike the previous game at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle, they can be pleased with the opening 40 minutes as well.
While they did make a few errors, they still competed well in what was a tight contest with Paul Rowley’s side.
The home side really made them work hard, and they did well to get their try through Harry Smith, which was a rare opportunity.
To be able to then take full control after the break was a really pleasing aspect of the victory.
2. French and Field put in deadly display
Bevan French and Jai Field must be a nightmare for any coach to prepare for.
Usually it’s a case of, if one doesn’t hurt you, then the other will.
On Friday night, they combined well together to do some real damage.
The move for French’s first try was simply sensational, as the winger quickly broke away down the right side.
To see Field racing up in support must’ve struck fear into the Salford defence, as the Wigan pair made the most of the opportunity.
French would go on to claim a hat-trick as he enjoyed a really good night, in what was probably his best game this season.
3. Marshall continues his good form
Liam Marshall also put in a good performance, as he claimed a brace.
The winger has received plenty of praise across the last few weeks, with a number of great performances since his Challenge Cup winning try.
He was deadly again against Salford.
After assisting Smith’s try in the first half, he truly started Wigan’s dominance with one of his own after the break.
It was a far from easy finish, as he did well, not only to get on the end of Jake Bibby’s grubber kick, but to keep both himself and the ball in play before completing the move.
4. Positive performances across the park
There were a number of other strong performances throughout the Wigan team.
Willie Isa put in a great shift at centre, filling in well for the injured Iain Thornley.
He’s looked really strong in the last two games for the Warriors, with his experience also a positive for Matty Peet’s side.
Meanwhile, Harry Smith seemed comfortable again, as him and the returning Thomas Leuluai seemed to control things in the second half.
The pack also played a big part putting the game in Wigan’s hands, with all four players off the interchange bench having a big impact when they came on.
5. Farrell is here to stay
Before the match, it was announced that Liam Farrell had signed a new three-year deal with the club.
While it was probably something never in doubt, it’s fantastic to have the news confirmed.
The 31-year-old seems to only get better with age, and his influence on this current side is clear to see.
He’s been such a crucial player for the club, and is a true modern day great.