WARRINGTON Wolves were back to their best as they toppled league leaders Leeds Rhinos 24-6 at the Halliwell Jones Stadium with an outstanding performance from man of the match Chris Bridge who achieved a personal milestone as he scored twice to mark 100 career tries and over 1,000 points for the club.
It was Warrington’s fourth consecutive victory following their disappointing defeat at bottom club Bradford Bulls at the start of the month, who they face again in the Challenge Cup next weekend.
The Wolves dominated the first half to lead 18-0 at the break thanks to tries from Bridge either side of one for Chris Hill, with Bridge on target with all three conversions.
The scoreline could have been greater but for some last ditch try saving tackles from Leeds full-back Zak Hardaker.
In a much tighter second half Warrington were restricted to a Bridge penalty and a Joel Monaghan try late on after Kylie Leululia briefly raised the visitors hopes with a try on 58 minutes.
Warrington had a great chance to score in the opening 90 seconds as young winger Gene Ormsby madea great break down the left, fed Joel Monaghan who passed to Bridge, who took the wrong option kicking when Stefan Ratchford was in acres of space and was unable to touch down the bouncing ball.
The visitors were next to go close as Carl Ablett just failed to ground the ball properly.
Defences stayed on top until the 17th minute when Bridge dummied his way over and then added the extras to make it 6-0.
The on 30 minutes a great break by subsititute Richie Myler sent the supporting Chris Hill over, with Bridge adding the extras to bring up his 1,000 career points with the Wolves. Four minutes later Bridge was celebrating his 100th try after being put over by Myler, with Bridge adding the simple extras to make it 18-0.
The Wolves had another great chance to score as Ormsby intercepted in his own half and raced clear to feed the supporting Joel Monaghan, who was superbly tackled into touch by Ablett.
Warrington were again denied almost straight from the re-start as Rhys Evans made a great break only to be denied by a superb covering tackle by Hardaker. On 49 minutes another great sweeping move from the Wolves came to an end as Ben Evans knocked on just before Ratchford touched down, with the effort ruled out by the video referee.
On 54 minutes the Wolves extended their lead as Bridge converted a penalty for off-side.
Four minutes later Leeds were given brief hope as they did well to keep the ball alive, with Leuluai eventually forcing his way over for a rare try which was converted by Kevin Sinfield.
But the Wolves made certain of a famous victory in the 72 minute when Joel Monaghan forced his way over wide out, taking a kick in the face from Ablett in the process, with the incident going on report. Bridge was unable to land the extras making it 24-6.
In the final minute Bridge attempted a drop goal which drifted wide.
The victory saw Leeds knocked off the top of the table as they conceeded four tries for the first time this season.
To hear Tony Smith’s post match comments CLICK HERE
Try scorer Chris Hill
MoM Chris Bridge is congratulated by fans
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Wolves: Matty Russell, Gene Ormsby, Joel Monaghan, Ryan Atkins, Rhys Evans; Stefan Ratchford, Chris Bridge, Chris Hill, Michael Monaghan, Anthony England, James Laithwaite, Ben Currie, Ben Harrison.
Subs: Richie Myler, Micky Higham, Roy Asotasi, Ben Evans.
Rhinos: Zak Hardaker, Tom Briscoe, Kallum Watkins, Joel Moon, Ryan Hall, Danny McGuire, Kevin Sinfield, Kylie Leuluai, Robbie Ward, Jamie Peacock, Mitch Achurch, Carl Ablett, Chris Clarkson.
Subs: Stevie Ward, Ian Kirke, Liam Sutcliffe, Brad Singleton.