Warrington Unlucky To Lose To Waterloo
By David Jervis
Loss sees Warrington in relegation zone
Warrington 28 Firwood Waterloo 30
The previous week, Warrington deservedly lost at Manchester. This Saturday, they very much deserved to win an excellent and exciting game against Firwood Waterloo but had to settle for just a losing bonus point, but perhaps suffered the injustice of two dubious decisions, which led to tries for the visitors. The loss drops Warrington to the relegation zone at third from the bottom of the league. However, just three points separate the sides at 8 to 12, so the rest of the season will see a frantic scramble to avoid demotion.
Warrington could not have started the game better as a swift attack put them deep into Waterloo territory and Tom Arnold, showing his versatility at scrum half and then stand-off, pounced in the corner to score. Darren Norman converted from the touchline.
Darren Norman then slotted over two excellent penalties to extend his team’s lead but Waterloo hit back when they won a line-out after a blatant intentional knock on which was not spotted by the referee, and flashed the ball across the line to score in the corner. Warrington soon replied with another well-struck Norman penalty but, again, Waterloo came back when their heavyweight pack showed their mastery of the pick-and-go to drive over close to the posts and allow an easy conversion.
Just before half time, Warrington scored their best-constructed try of the game when slick handling saw them ten yards from the visitors’ line and a neat pass from Sean Callender saw player/coach Andy Roberts stroll over unopposed. Darren Norman’s boot ensured that the sides turned round with Warrington 23-12 ahead.
The lead was soon reduced when Waterloo kicked a penalty and then a break-away saw them further sneak to just two points of Warrington when they scored a converted try under the posts. Fifteen minutes later, the visitors went ahead for the first time courtesy of a disputable penalty before Warrington retook the lead when good running from the forwards, spearheaded by Chris White, made space for Jamie Thompson. The classy centre, seamlessly fitting into the side although this was his first game for twelve months, made a telling break before putting in a delicate chip kick, which was picked up by the ever-vigilant Nathan Beasley who scooted over and touched down between the sticks. Unfortunately, Darren Norman was wide with what was his easiest attempt of the game.
With ten minutes to go, Waterloo came back when the sweetest of inside passes from their talented scrum half allowed their ponderous loose head prop to thunder over under the post. They made no mistake with the conversion to take a winning lead. Although Warrington strove to reply for the last ten minutes and their defence stood firm, with a cover tackle in the corner from Tom Arnold being one of the highlights of the game, the match was already lost and Warrington had to be satisfied with the losing bonus point.
“This must be the one that got away,” commented coach Andy Roberts. “Perhaps we were very unfortunate not to win but we now have to concentrate on the games we have left.”