Warrington proved too strong for Hull to keep up their fight for second place in Super League.
The Wolves were given a good workout ahead of next week’s Challenge Cup final against Leeds and the scores were locked at 12-12 after ten minutes of the second half, before Danny Tickle‘s sin-binning gave Warrington the opportunity to make their pressure pay.
Hull had an agenda of their own, needing the points to fight off Leeds in the race for fourth place, and they hit the front when Tom Briscoe gathered Tickle’s excellent long pass and brilliantly stepped opposite number Chris Riley before finishing well in the corner under the attention of two defenders.
In a competitive match, Warrington got back on level terms when they found room on the left to allow Riley to race in.
Hull were denied by the video referee when Craig Fitzgibbon was adjudged to have obstructed Richie Myler, but they were soon to hit the front once again, when the Australian back-rower set up Epalahame Lauaki to crash over.
However, a wonderful try by the home side got them back on level terms at the interval. Orchestrated by half-backs Myler and Michael Monaghan, Riley fed centre Ryan Atkins down the left hand side and his pass inside just before being bundled in to touch set up his wingman for his second try.
Warrington came out fired up in the second half and were on the front foot immediately. However, Hull stood firm, that was until Myler weaved his way through the Airlie Birds defence and Tickle was penalised for holding down the former Salford half-back, resulting in a ten minute spell in the sin bin.
Hull saw off the initial threat, but were undone when Monaghan dropped his shoulder on the last tackle and raced through a gap before feeding Ben Westwood. Westwood did well to keep his balance before finding the supporting Jon Clarke on his right shoulder to put the Wolves in front for the first time.
Tickle’s absence proved even more costly for the visitors when Warrington doubled their advantage through man of the match Westwood to go 24-12 in front.
Upon Tickle’s return, Hull were given some immediate hope in fortuitous circumstances. Willie Manu bust through a tackle and got his hands free, but his offload was too low for the supporting Lee Radford. However, the ball bounced down off Radford’s leg, and he hacked the ball forward before grounding it under the posts with the Warrington defence frozen to the spot.
However, any hope they did have was soon distinguished when Radford himself lost the ball in a strong tackle by Louis Anderson, setting up excellent field position for the Wolves, and it was talisman forward Adrian Morley who rode a couple of challenges to go in under the sticks and seal the win.
The lively Myler sealed the victory with the Wolves sixth try to give them the perfect tonic ahead of their Challenge Cup defence against Leeds at Wembley next Saturday.
Meanwhile, the Rhinos were 52-6 winners over Catalans. They ran in nine tries to leapfrog Hull in to fourth place in the table. Danny McGuire and Ryan Hall both grabbed hat-tricks as Leeds romped home over the struggling French side.