Saturday’s game is the first Super League Grand Final meeting between WARRINGTON WOLVES and WIGAN WARRIORS. It will be the second meeting between the clubs at Old Trafford however, following Wigan’s 8-0 Premiership Final victory in 1987. Warriors coach SHAUN WANE played at prop in that game.
Wane takes charge of his first Grand Final, having previously been an assistant to Michael Maguire for the Warriors’ 2010 win against St Helens.
With victory, Warrington would pick up the League title for the first time since 1955. The club last won the title following a 7-3 Championship Final win against Oldham at Maine Road, Manchester.
The club only has one previous final win, from ten attempts, against Wigan however – in the 1980-81 Lancashire Cup decider. They have lost a Challenge Cup Final, a Championship Final, a Premiership Final, four Lancashire Cup Finals and two JPS/Regal Trophy Finals to their Lancashire rivals.
Saturday’s game is the first final meeting between the clubs since Wigan’s 40-10 Regal Trophy win at Huddersfield in 1995. It is only the second Super League play-off meeting between the sides, and the first for over a decade.
The rugby league bookmakers have Warrington as slight favourites at 5/6, with Wigan 11/10.
Wigan won their last play-off game against Warrington, 25-12 at the JJB Stadium (as it was then known) on 27 September, 2003. Warriors captain SEAN O’LOUGHLIN and Wolves duo BEN WESTWOOD and PAUL WOOD all played in that game.
Warrington coach TONY SMITH is the only man to take charge of two different clubs in Super League Grand Finals. As well as overseeing the Wolves for last season’s defeat to Leeds, Smith was in charge of the Rhinos in 2004 (Won, v Bradford), 2005 (Lost, v Bradford) and 2007 (Won, v St Helens).
Smith will also equal Brian Noble’s record of five coaching appearances in Super League Grand Finals on Saturday. Noble was in charge of Bradford Bulls in the 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005 deciders.
Warrington captain ADRIAN MORLEY is the oldest player to take part in a Super League Grand Final. Morley, the only British player to win Grand Finals on both sides of the world (with Sydney Roosters in 2002 and Bradford in 2005), will be 36 years & 148 days old on Saturday.
Warrington’s JOEL MONAGHAN has scored tries in each of the Wolves’ last five meetings with Wigan (1-1-1-2-1).
PREVIOUS FINAL MEETINGS
(Warrington won 1, Wigan won 9)
Challenge Cup Final
1990 Warrington 14, Wigan 36 (at Wembley Stadium)
1926 Warrington 10, Wigan 22 (at Knowsley Road, St Helens)
1987 Warrington 0, Wigan 8 (at Old Trafford, Manchester)
John Player Special/Regal Trophy
1995 Warrington 10, Wigan 40 (at McAlpine Stadium, Huddersfield) (RT)
1987 Warrington 4, Wigan 18 (at Burnden Park, Bolton) (JPST)
1987-88 Warrington 16, Wigan 28 (at Knowsley Road, St Helens)
1985-86 Warrington 8, Wigan 34 (at Knowsley Road, St Helens)
1980-81 Warrington 26, Wigan 10 (at Knowsley Road, St Helens)
1950-51 Warrington 5, Wigan 28 (at Station Road, Swinton)
1948-49 Warrington 8, Wigan 14 (at Station Road, Swinton)
Last 10 meetings:
Warrington 22, Wigan 12 (SLR19, 24/6/13)
Wigan 17, Warrington 17 (SLR2, 8/2/13)
Warrington 30, Wigan 10 (SLR24, 11/8/12)
Wigan 20, Warrington 22 (SLR8, 23/3/12)
Warrington 39, Wigan 12 (SLR26, 4/9/11)
Warrington 24, Wigan 44 (CCQF, 23/7/11)
Wigan 6, Warrington 24 (SLR7, 25/3/11)
Wigan 16, Warrington 23 (SLR22, 16/7/10)
Warrington 20, Wigan 22 (SLR3, 20/2/10)
Wigan 36, Warrington 16 (SLR24, 14/8/09)
Super League summary:
Warrington won 16
Wigan won 24 (includes win in 2003 play-offs)
Warrington highest score: 47-38 (H, 2001) (Widest margin: 30-10, H, 2012)
Wigan highest score: 58-4 (H, 2002) (also widest margin)
Previous play-off meeting:
Wigan 25, Warrington 12 (SLEPO, 27/9/03)