Matty Smith faces anxious wait

Wigan's Matty Smith tackles Danny Tickle
Wigan's Matty Smith tackles Danny Tickle

MATTY Smith will have to wait until early next week to discover if he faces a ban for kicking Widnes’ Rhys Hanbury in Wigan’s 22-22 draw on Super League’s opening night.

With a World Club Series game against Brisbane Broncos just two weeks away, Warriors will be anxious to discover if he faces retrospective punishment - particularly as suspensions for ‘light contact’ kicks range from one to five games.

The halfback appeared to lash out at the Vikings No.1 as he celebrated Chris Dean’s late try, kicking the Australian as he walked away.

Widnes player Cameron Phelps rushed in to protest, before he was wrestled to the ground by Warriors forward Joel Tomkins.

All three players were spoken to by referee James Child, who later sinbinned Smith with a minute left on the clock.

Child was prevented from awarding a penalty - for an ‘eight-point try’ - as the foul did not take place during the act of scoring the try.

But the incident is almost certain to be considered by the RFL’s match review panel members when they meet on Monday.

They may decide Smith has no case to answer, issue him a caution, or charge him. If it is the latter, he will face the disciplinary committee on Tuesday.

Under the laws of the game, the offence of ‘kicks opponent - light contact’ can range from a grade B to D offence.

The normal suspension range for grade B is one to two games, while a grade D is two to five matches.

Vikings’ Patrick Ah Van was also sent off in Thursday’s televised opener, as the Warriors surrendered a 16-0 lead to share the honours.

Wigan face Huddersfield at home next Friday before the following week’s eagerly-awaited showdown with the NRL heavyweights Brisbane.