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Super League: Warrington Wolves back on song with emphatic win over Widnes Vikings
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Warrington Wolves restored local bragging rights with an emphatic 44-6 success over Widnes Vikings at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.
The Wolves, who lost both home and away to the Vikings last season, were quick out of the blocks with Gareth O'Brien and brothers Joel and Michael Monaghan crossing inside the opening 20 minutes.
Chris Bridge added Wolves' fourth try of the half with further efforts after the break from Rhys Evans (2) and substitute Ben Currie ensuring a good day at the office.
The Vikings were able to avoid the anguish of being blanked on Good Friday courtesy of Paddy Flynn's brave late score although there was still time for Ryan Atkins to conclude the scoring.
Warrington were without the injured trio of Ben Westwood, Paul Wood and Simon Grix, while half-back Richie Myler was left out so O'Brien was given a starting spot and Roy Asotasi and Ben Harrison were given places in the pack.
Stefan Marsh and Joe Mellor were still sidelined for Widnes who welcomed back Cameron Phelps, Alex Gerrard and Danny Galea.
It was the Wolves who made the perfect start and were ahead after just four minutes when O'Brien was on hand to take Michael Monaghan's pass and crash over from close range for the opening try of the game which Bridge converted.
And seven minutes later O'Brien turned provider as his inch-perfect kick to the corner allowed winger Joel Monaghan to dive on the loose ball in spectacular fashion.
Bridge landed an excellent touchline conversion to give the home side an early 12-0 advantage.
It got even better for Tony Smith's side when Michael Monaghan joined his brother on the scoresheet as he burrowed his way through the Widnes defence to touch down and Bridge maintained his 100 per cent record with the boot to make it 18-0 after just 17 minutes.
Widnes had rarely threatened during the first half with the closest they went to troubling the scoreboard was when Ian Smith ruled that Jack Owens had just failed to touch down Kevin Brown's kick before the ball had rolled dead.
The Wolves claimed their fourth try of the half six minutes before half-time when Micky Higham made a 30-metre midfield break and Bridge was in support to take his pass and touch down. The centre landed his fourth conversion of the game to give Warrington a commanding 24-0 half time advantage.
It took Warrington just three minutes after the restart to add to their tally when O'Brien's long pass allowed Evans to dive over in the corner.
And they added to Widnes's misery with two tries in three minutes midway through the half as Evans claimed his second try of the game and Ben Currie also touched down to stretch the lead to 38-0.
On a day to forget for Dennis Betts' side winger Flynn scored a late consolation try for the visitors which Tickle converted but there was still time for the Wolves to finish in style when Atkins crossed in the final seconds to complete the rout.
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Super League Table
|9||Hull K R||27||23|
|10||Salford Red Devils||27||23|
|13||Bradford Bulls *||27||10|
|Sunday 14th September|
|Wakefield 18 - 42 Hull K R|
|Saturday 13th September|
|Catalan Dragons 28 - 6 Castleford|
|London Broncos 36 - 46 Bradford|
|Friday 12th September|
|Salford 36 - 6 Widnes|
|Huddersfield 17 - 16 St Helens|
|Hull 24 - 19 Leeds|
|Thursday 11th September|
|Wigan 24 - 20 Warrington|
|Sunday 7th September|
|Castleford 26 - 22 Wakefield|
|Hull K R 14 - 32 Catalan Dragons|
|Bradford 12 - 32 Widnes|
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