Revitalised attack pleases Wane

Liam Marshall crossed for two tries
Liam Marshall crossed for two tries

Shaun Wane was pleased with the way his Wigan team showcased a more expansive attack as they registered an impressive 40-12 win at Salford on the opening night.

The Warriors edged a fast-paced opening half 10-6 but cut loose in the second-half to score five further tries - and ensure they head to Australia in a positive mood.

The left-edge pairing of Liam Marshall and Oliver Gildart finished with two tries each, with Morgan Escare also crossing down that flank in his first game since last May.

“I was satisfied,” said Wane. “We did some good things, we did things we practiced. I’m pleased.

“I thought the two tries they scored were soft, defensively from us, but overall I’m happy. I’d have taken that score before the game.

“There was a bit more ball-movement, a bit more movement from the players, and in the second-half I saw what we’ve been practising.

“We looked energetic, we looked fit, and in the back-end of the game they couldn’t cope with it.

“It was good to see Morgan out there again - he winded himself by doing a stupid dive for his try!”

Escare’s introduction in the first-half saw Sam Tomkins switch from full-back to half-back, and No.7 Sam Powell move to hooker, and the ploy paid off.

“I liked how the spine worked, we had plenty of options,” said Wane. “We changed the spine quite a bit but we looked comfortable, with whoever we put in different positions.”

Ben Flower didn’t return to the action in the second-half after rolling his ankle, but will be fit to fly out to Australia.

Joe Burgess, Sean O’Loughlin and John Bateman - who didn’t play Salford - will also make the trip to face Hull FC in Wollongong, and Souths in Sydney, on consecutive Saturdays.

“It’s round one, we won’t get carried away and we will need to be better to beat Hull. But it was a good start,” added Wane.

Salford coach Ian Watson hailed Wigan’s second-half display as “outstanding”, particularly their lethal left edge.

“I thought we were great in the first half and we looked pretty comfortable,” he said. “But Wigan’s left edge tore us apart with the likes of Williams and Gildart. We knew all about it and had prepped for it but dealing with it is something else.

“Wigan were outstanding - they executed well and took their opportunities.”

Young prop Caine Barnes, who is in Shaun Wane’s senior squad but has not played for the first-team, has joined Workington on a month’s loan.