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Warriors battle past Reds
Wigan keep unbeaten record after seeing off Salford
Wigan maintained their unbeaten Super League record by claiming a 32-16 victory over an improved Salford side at the Willows.
The Warriors, returning to league action after their defeat in the World Club Challenge, ran in six tries in all - two of which were scored by scrum-half Thomas Leuluai.
But they were made to work by a tough Reds outfit, who were playing under football director Steve Simms in the absence of head coach Shaun McRae.
The hosts had been booed off the pitch after the 56-22 defeat to Saints last time out at home, were this time given generous applause by their fans.
Wigan showed no ill effects of their loss to St George Illawarra as Leuluai broke through the defence to create a try for second-rower Harrison Hansen in the second minute.
The New Zealand international then spun out of a tackle to cross the try-line himself from close range and make it 10-0.
Salford would not suffer another capitulation, however, as the impressive Matty Smith combined with full-back Luke Patten to send Ashley Gibson over on 17 minutes.
The goal was added by Stefan Ratchford, but Wigan were to regain their 10-point lead soon afterwards as Paul Deacon's kick on the last tackle bounced off a defender and Lee Mossop took advantage for a simple try.
The Reds continued to make a fight of it and scored a second try of their own just before half-time as prop Rob Parker powered over from dummy half.
Smith was off target with the conversion, but the hosts were still in touch at 16-10 when the sides headed in for the break.
Wigan asserted themselves again three minutes after the restart as Leuluai jinked his way over the line for his second of the night.
And the reigning champions began to pull away when youngster Josh Charnley put the finishing touch on a neat handling move involving Leuluai and Sam Tomkins.
Deacon kicked a fourth goal to increase the gap to 16 but Salford stood firm and grabbed their third try after Chris Nero cut through the defence superbly to touch down, with Mark Sneyd adding the extras.
The Warriors would have the final say, however, when Tomkins broke out of defence before setting up winger Darrell Goulding to cross the try-line and complete the scoring.
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Andy T says...
Good to see Wigan bounce back with some hard graft against a Salford team that I hope will continue to improve and challenge for the play offs come the end of the season. It may take a few more games for the team to gell, but I think they will start to up-set a few teams and give the Salford fans the performances they deserve. I dont think any team will ever go unbeaten in Super League, such is the ability of any team to beat the other as seen last season, but Wigans defence and super quick attack will go very close to completing a perfect season. i just worry about the amount of penalties they give away, probably the one thing coach Maguire still needs to address and install in to his Wigan team.
Posted 09:33 5th March 2011
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First Utility Super League Table
|5||Hull K R||0||0|
|7||Salford Red Devils||0||0|
|First Utility Super League|
|Thursday 5th February|
|20:00||Widnes vs Wigan|
|Friday 6th February|
|20:00||St Helens vs Catalans Dragons|
|Saturday 7th February|
|15:00||Warrington vs Salford|
|Sunday 8th February|
|15:00||Huddersfield vs Hull|
|15:00||Hull K R vs Leeds|
|15:30||Castleford vs Wakefield|
|Thursday 12th February|
|20:00||Salford vs St Helens|
|Friday 13th February|
|20:00||Hull vs Warrington|
|20:00||Leeds vs Widnes|
|20:00||Wigan vs Huddersfield|
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