Warrington Wolves 34 Castleford Tigers 10: Castleford outclassed by Wolves

Warrington Wolves' Ben Currie is amused as Whizzy Rascal arrives with the match ball. (Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com)Warrington Wolves' Ben Currie is amused as Whizzy Rascal arrives with the match ball. (Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com)
Warrington Wolves' Ben Currie is amused as Whizzy Rascal arrives with the match ball. (Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com)
AFTER this sobering defeat, despondent Castleford Tigers will wish Whizzy Rascal had been left to make his escape from the Halliwell Jones Stadium.

Warrington Wolves allowed a young fan to deliver the match ball by motoring onto the field in his own little car ahead of kick-off last night.

But the mischievous youngster had the crowd - and players - in hysterics after he carried on past the centre spot, did a U-turn and headed straight back for the tunnel with the ball still in his grasp before being waved down.

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However, error-ridden Castleford were not laughing at the end of a disappointing 80 minutes.

Having lost last Friday’s season opener against Salford Red Devils, new coach Lee Radford still awaits his first victory while, in contrast, his predecessor Daryl Powell maintains his 100 per cent winning start to life as Warrington chief.

Ex-England winger Josh Charnley scored twice on his 100th appearance for Warrington, and passed the 250 career try mark in the process, as they eventually eased clear.

Clearly, it is still only round two but some of Castleford’s defence was alarming at times and Radford will be keen to quickly address that before next Friday’s trip to Hull KR.

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They were 12-0 down at half-time and that margin of deficit was perhaps even a little harsh on them.

Castleford Tigers' Niall Evalds on the run.  (Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com)Castleford Tigers' Niall Evalds on the run.  (Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com)
Castleford Tigers' Niall Evalds on the run. (Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com)

Admittedly, Radford’s side were far from great but they had a couple of opportunities to strike.

Kenny Edwards did get over after breaking the Warrington line 20m out but he was deemed to have produced a double-movement when bouncing out of Stefan Ratchford’s last-ditch tackle.

It seemed debatable although the player himself did not argue with James Child’s on-field decision.

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Jordan Turner also barged over between the posts but was held up.

But when Jake Trueman then barely saw the ball leave his foot when trying a grubber at the next play, it summed up Castleford’s night: they just did not click.

Trueman had already sliced a kick into touch but it was their defensive efforts which would have given Radford most concern.

Too often, especially in the first period, Warrington were able to brush off their opponents at the initial contact in the tackle.

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Gareth Widdop, in particular, had a field day, continually spinning away and finding team-mates when pressing down in Castleford’s half while George Williams’ excellent short-kicking game caused the visitors headaches.

That said, Tigers gifted Warrington their first try when Matty Ashton picked off Niall Evalds’ pass and raced 90m to score in the fourth minute.

Ratchford added the first of his five goals and added his second soon after when Widdop bumped off a defender to send Williams sharply through.

Next, Widdop hit the crossbar with a drop goal attempt but it mattered not as the game would never be so close that one point proved decisive.

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Castleford, who lost Edwards and Alex Sutcliffe to injuries, did finally get their act together, producing some slick handling for Evalds to cleverly put Derrell Olpherts over in the 44th minute.

But their discipline let them down, conceding a number of penalties to allow Warrington a chance to quickly reply.

Ratchford came into the line perfectly to confuse Castleford’s left edge before firing over a pass for Charnely to finish.

After Cheyse Blair was penalised for another tip-tackle, Williams crabbed across field and found Robbie Mulhern thundering back on the angle.

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The ex-Hull KR prop was going with some power but Liam Watts will be mortified at allowing him to surge through him from 20m out in the 57th minute.

Ratchford improved and when Bureta Fara’mio spilled coming out of his own 20, Pete Mata’utia hacked on to score against the club he left last autumn.

Trueman got one back when he mopped up O’Brien’s hoisted kick but, after O’Brien converted, Blair coughed up the ball bringing the restart back.

Charnley soon added his second and, at the end, Castleford were left facing plenty more questions.

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Warrington Wolves: Ratchford; Charnley, Mata’utia, King, Ashton; Widdop, Williams; Philbin, Walker, Mulhern, Currie, Longstaff, Clark. Substitutes: Hughes, Bullock, Davis, Thewlis.

Castleford Tigers: Evalds; Faraimo, Mamo, Fonua, Olpherts; Trueman, O’Brien; Smith, McShane, Lawler, Edwards, Sutcliffe, Westerman. Substitutes: Watts, Griffin, Turner, Blair.

Referee: James Child (Dewsbury)

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