Pictures Eddie Whitham
WARRINGTON Wolves fell to their first Super League defeat of the season as a Sam Tomkins penalty edged Catalans to a 23-22 win.
A converted Dec Patton try had given the Wolves the slenderest of advantages going in to the final 10 minutes, but Tomkins landed a kick from 45 metres out to pinch the win for the hosts in Perpignan.
In a repeat of last season’s Challenge Cup final, the Dragons got off to a great start and led 14-0 inside the first 20 minutes thanks to tries from Brayden Wiliame and Kenny Edwards, plus three Tomkins’ goal.
It took 35 minutes for Warrington to get on the board, Ratchford scoring a try that he converted himself for 14-6.
But on the stroke of half time, Tony Gigot would kick what would turn out to be the decisive point, landing a drop goal to nudge Catalans to a 15-6 lead at the break.
Warrington responded after the break and within five minutes of the restart, were within three points, Daryl Clark’s converted try making it 15-12.
And on the hour, the Wolves hit the front for the first time thanks to Ryan Atkins’ score.
But Catalans moved five points clear on 64 minutes, Tomkins converting a Remi Casty try, before the see-saw second half was decided in the last 11 minutes.
Catalans: Tomkins, Yaha, Langi, Wiliame, Tierney, Gigot, Smith, Simon, McIlorum, Moa, Edwards, Julien, Casty. Subs: Whitley, Goudemand, Maria, Baitieri.
Warrington: Ratchford, Lineham, Goodwin, Atkins, Charnley, Austin, Patton, Hill, Clark, Cooper, King, Hughes, Tasi. Subs: Murdoch-Masila, Clark, Philbin, Mamo.