PICTURES EDDIE WHITHAM
WARRINGTON Wolves have finally got off the mark this season – but a 22-all draw at home to Hull keeps them rooted to the foot of the Super League table.
After sixth successive defeats at the start of this Super League campaign, the Wolves bravely battled back from 20-4 down to rescue a point against the Airlie Bird to temporarily lift themselves off the bottom, until Widnes completed a win at Leigh an hour later.
Warrington had chances to claim both points, with Kurt Gidley missing a drop goal attempt and Mike Cooper having a try ruled out which coach Tony Smith thought was harsh.
In-form half-back Albert Kelly had the visitors in front inside 10 minutes as he stepped through a weak Kevin Brown tackle for a try which was converted by Marc Sneyd.
Matty Russell got the Wolves on the board but another error by Brown, this time throwing an interception pass to Jake Connor, enabled Hull to extend their advantage with a length of the field try.
A Sneyd penalty extended their advantage to 14-4 and four minutes shy of half time, Jamie Shaul raced in from 60 metres for 20-4.
But the Wolves grabbed a crucial score on the stroke of half time, again from Russell, to claw themselves back within two scores and give themselves hope.
And so it was to prove. After Rhys Evans had a try chalked off for a forward pass, Sneyd added another two on to the Hull lead, but Daryl Clark darted in from dummy half to reduce arrears to 22-14.
Russell’s hat-trick try and a touchline conversion from Gidley pulled the Wolves within two, and they were able to level things up nine minutes from time through a Gidley penalty for holding down.
Attention turned to drop goals, and Stefan Ratchford missed the first attempt wildly, before Sneyd also missed a difficult effort from more than 40 metres.
Gidley came closest in the 79 minutes, but in the end both sides had to settle for a point.
It did mean that for an hour the Wolves jumped off the bottom, but Widnes recorded their first win of the season, beating Leigh 37-24 to in fact extend their advantage over Warrington at the bottom to two points.
Warrington Wolves: Ratchford; Russell, T. King, Atkins, Evans; Brown, Gidley; Hill, Clark, Cooper, Westwood, Hughes, Westerman. Replacements: Sims, Dwyer, G. King, Philbin.
Hull FC: Shaul; Fonua, Connor, Griffin, Michaels; Kelly, Sneyd, Taylor, Washbrook, Bowden, Manu, Minichiello, Ellis. Replacements: Litten, Thompson, Watts, Turgut.