Wane ‘fairly happy’

Hull KR v Wigan Warriors: Pat Richards' try
Hull KR v Wigan Warriors: Pat Richards' try

SHAUN Wane declared himself “fairly happy” after Wigan’s 22-6 pre-season win at Hull KR yesterday.

The Warriors fell 6-0 down during a scratchy opening half-hour, but drew level on the stroke of half-time through young-gun Matt Russell.

And they improved in the second-half, keeping their opponents at bay and registering three further tries including two from Pat Richards, who also converted three from four of his conversion attempts for a personal tally of 14 points.

Wane said: “I didn’t think we were as clinical as we needed to be at times, but overall I was fairly satisfied.

“We gave seven debuts and they all acquitted themselves well, and I’m pleased with that.

“Our defence and enthusiasm in the second half were good and they needed to be, because I thought Hull KR played well and they’re well coached.

“But I would have liked to have been more clinical in certain areas of the game.

“For example, we gave a forward pass from a tap restart on our 20m and I won’t accept errors like that.

“It’ll be a tough week this week.”

Wigan had half-a-dozen front-line stars missing including Sam Tomkins, Thomas Leuluai and Sean O’Loughlin.

New-boys Ben Flower, Epalahame Lauaki, Gil Dudson and Anthony Gelling all featured and settled into the side well.

But it was two familiar faces who earned special praise from Wane after the first of three pre-season matches.

“Micky McIlorum changed the game when he came off the bench,” said Wane. “And Darrell Goulding was outstanding.

“I was really pleased with Darrell at centre. He’s a skilful player and he’s just wanting someone to show faith in him, and I will.

“I’ll back him and I will work with him.”

He added: “The new-boys all did okay. They’ve come into a new side and they handled themselves really well.

“I’m fairly happy.”

Lauaki, who troubled Hull KR with his strong charges, left the action mid-way through the second-half with a chest injury.

But Wane said he should be fit to play against Huddersfield this Thursday in a game celebrating Sean O’Loughlin’s testimonial.

“He got a whack in his chest so we took him off as a precaution,” he said. “Lee Mossop also got a bit of concussion from an elbow to his head... but front-rowers get that.”

Wigan also face Salford a week tomorrow to complete their pre-season programme ahead of the start of Super League on February 5.