Ryan Atkins reaches Super League milestone in Warrington’s victory over Wigan

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Warrington centre Ryan Atkins scored his 174th Super League try to help Warrington inflict a first defeat of the season on Wigan.

Atkins’ 55th-minute touchdown took him ahead of former Great Britain stand-off Leon Pryce into fifth place in the list of Super League’s all-time tryscorers and clinched a thoroughly deserved 16-10 victory.

Wigan coach Shaun Wane insisted pre-match that he would not be using jet lag as an excuse for a defeat but his side lacked sparkle four days after arriving back from their two-week trip to New South Wales.

Warrington, who handed debuts to winger Mitch Brown and forward Sitaleki Akauola, took an early lead with a penalty from Bryson Goodwin, awarded for a late and high tackle by Tony Clubb on returning half-back Tyrone Roberts.

And they scored the only try of the first half just five minutes later with winger Tom Lineham taking Ben Currie’s cut-out pass to touch down in the left corner after the Wolves had moved the ball crisply out from the right wing, where Brown had gone close.

Goodwin’s conversion made it 8-0 and somehow that is how it stayed until half-time.

With full-back Stefan Ratchford and hooker Daryl Clark constant threats with the ball, Warrington put the visitors’ defence under siege and Wigan were indebted to their back three for keeping them in the game.

Warriors coach Shaun Wane delayed his usual reshuffle until nine minutes before the break and Morgan Escare, on at full-back with Sam Tomkins moving into the halves, was immediately called on to demonstrate his defensive mettle with a last-ditch tackle on Kevin Brown.

As the home side continued to dominate, Atkins dropped the ball over the line a minute before the break and Wigan had another let-off within a minute of the restart.

Roberts sliced through the first line of defence and kicked ahead for forward Ben Murdoch-Masila but the big man could not regather the ball cleanly and another chance went begging.

Wigan were then indebted to a covering tackle from Sam Tomkins to deny Goodwin a try, although the latter did add two points for a penalty awarded for lying on.

The pressure on the Warriors line finally told after 54 minutes when Wigan failed to deal with Brown’s high kick and Atkins pounced on the loose ball for his side’s second try.

Goodwin, who was off target with a third penalty attempt, kicked his second conversion to extend the lead to 16-0 before Wigan eventually broke their duck with winger Liam Marshall’s 62nd-minute try, his ninth in five games against the Wolves.

The visitors added a second try, a barging effort from Clubb, in the last minute and Tomkins’ goal rounded off the scoring.

The only disappointment for Warrington, who have now won back-to-back games under new coach Steve Price, was the loss of England second rower Currie, who limped off after 17 minutes while Brown was helped from the field 20 minutes from the end with a head injury.

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