Warrington Wolves

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Warrington Wolves
Warringtonwolves.png
Club information
Full name Warrington Wolves
Rugby League Football Club
Nickname(s) The Wire
The Wolves
Website Official site
Founded 1876; 138 years ago (1876)
Current details
Ground(s)
Chairman Steven Broomhead
Head Coach Tony Smith
Competition Super League
2013 season 2nd
Rugby football current event.png Current season

Warrington Wolves RLFC is a professional rugby league football club based in Warrington, England that competes in Super League. They play at the Halliwell Jones Stadium, having moved there from Wilderspool in 2003.[1]

Warrington is one of the original twenty-two clubs that formed the Northern Rugby Football Union in 1895[2] and the only one that has played every season in the top flight. They are nicknamed "The Wire" in reference to the wire-pulling industry in the town.

Warrington have local rivalries with Widnes Vikings, St. Helens and Wigan Warriors. They have won three League Championships and are the fourth most successful team in the Challenge Cup with eight victories, behind Wigan, St Helens and Leeds. Their most successful season came in 1953–54 when they completed a Championship and Challenge Cup 'Double', beating Halifax twice in the space of four days to first win the Challenge Cup 18–4 in a replay at Odsal, then clinch the Championship 8–7 at Maine Rd.

The current head coach at the club is Tony Smith who joined in March 2009. As of the 2014 season, the captaincy is jointly held by Second-rower Ben Westwood and Hooker Michael Monaghan.

History[edit]

Early years[edit]

The official foundation date for the club is given as 1879,[3] rugby football was certainly played in the town before that date and there was an earlier club bearing the same name. Under the heading 'Outdoor Sports – Football' the Widnes Guardian of 25 January 1873 reports on a recent game between Warrington and Wigan at the (unnamed) ground of the former. On 6 December 1873 that same newspaper carried details of a local derby between Warrington and Zingari and in subsequent weeks there were matches with Sale and Free Wanderers. Because surviving records from that era are fragmentary it is not possible to say with certainty what became of this Warrington club.

Warrington Zingari was founded in 1879 by Timothy Grix of Chatburn. The committee of the newly formed club managed to get the use of a field fronting Sankey Street. The headquarters of the club were at the White Hart Hotel in Sankey Street. The first match was an away game against the Walton side played at Rice Field in Liverpool on 18 October 1879. Walton won by three goals (converted tries) to nil.[3]

The first home game at Sankey Street for the club was against Oughtrington, with Warrington gaining their first victory by three goals to one. In their first season Warrington played 11 games, won 7, lost 2 and drew 2. A year later, The Warrington Guardian purchased the land in Sankey Street for its new offices and the club was forced to move to a new pitch at Wilderspool. Another local club, Padgate Excelsior amalgamated with Warrington in 1881–82 to form a representative town side.

After one season at Wilderspool Road, the club obtained another field at Slutchers Lane. A year later, Warrington moved back to Sankey Street to play in a field behind the town's post office. In 1883–84, they moved for the fourth time, this time back to Wilderspool Road, the new pitch being just a short distance from the previous ground.

In 1884–85, Warrington were strengthened again when the club Warrington Wanderers joined the town side.[3] In 1886, the club won its first silverware, the South West Lancashire and Border Towns Trophy.[3] On 28 August 1895, the Committee decided to join with 21 other clubs throughout Lancashire and Yorkshire to form a new 'Northern Union' and resigned from the RFU.[2]

In 1900–01, Warrington reached the final of the Challenge Cup, facing Batley. A crowd of 29,000 turned out at Leeds to see Warrington battle hard but be beaten by two tries to nil. Warrington also appeared in the renamed South West Lancashire Cup against Leigh two days later. The strenuous game against Batley took its toll on the Warrington players and the match ended in a 0–0 draw, the replay never took place.

In 1903–04, Warrington defeated Bradford Northern in a semi-final replay to earn a place in the final of the Challenge Cup. Warrington put up a fine performance against Halifax but lost 8–3. In 1904–05, Warrington beat Hull Kingston Rovers 6–0 to win the Challenge Cup final in front of a crowd of 19,638.[2]

In 1908, 14 November the first touring Australian rugby league team visit Warrington. The Kangaroos embarked upon a massive six months tour of Britain taking in 45 matches. Their timing was not good as the north of England was hit by strikes in the cotton mills, which badly affected attendances as fans could not afford to watch the pioneering Aussies. On Saturday 14 November 1908 Warrington played the Kangaroos. Warrington won the match 10 ' 3 with Jackie Fish the hero scoring one try and Ike Taylor the other, Fish and George Dickenson kicked a goal each. A crowd of 5,000 watched the match at Wilderspool. The Warrington team that day was Jimmy Tilley, Jackie Fish, George Dickenson, Ike Taylor, L. Treharne, Ernie Brookes, John Jenkins, Billy Dowell, Alf Boardman, Billy O'Neill, George Thomas, Peter Boardman and John Willie Chester. The Australians came back to Wilderspool for "revenge" later in the tour but tries from Fish and Jenkins earned the 'Wirepullers' an 8 ' 8 draw. Two members of the Kangaroo squad, Dan Frawley and Larry O'Malley later signed for Warrington and played the next season at Wilderspool. Warrington have the best record of any club side against the touring Kangaroos with eight wins and one draw from sixteen matches.[4]

In 1913, 5th challenge cup final Warrington reached their fifth Challenge Cup Final, with wins over Keighley, Hull KR, Salford and Dewsbury. The Final was lost 9–5 to the mighty Huddersfield team of "All-Stars". Warrington scored first through a try by Bradshaw converted by Jolley and gave a wonderful display in what was considered to be the best Cup Final of the pre-war era. A disappointing league season had seen Warrington finish 18th, their lowest pre Great War. So the Challenge Cup performances were a tremendous achievement.[5]

Post World War I[edit]

After a bad start to the 1921–22 season, Warrington won 12 out of 13 matches. This included an 8–5 victory over the visiting Australasian team of the 1921–22 Kangaroo tour of Great Britain. Warrington beat St. Helens Recs and Leigh to reach the final of the Lancashire Cup. Wire beat Oldham 7–5, despite playing with only 12 men for most of the match after centre Collins sustained a broken collar bone.

After a bad start to the 1927–28 current and a poor previous season Warrington notched up victories over Hull Kingston Rovers, Huddersfield and finally Leeds in the semi-final of the Challenge Cup. The final against Swinton was played in Wigan, with an estimated 12,000 travelling from the town to watch the match. Warrington were beaten 5–3, but a contentious decision could have cost the Wire the match. The Kangaroos visited Wilderspool again in 1929 or 1930, Wire were without five regular players either playing for Lancashire or injured. Despite this, Warrington beat the tourists 17–8.

In 1932–33, the Lancashire Cup was won by beating St Helens in close fought match, the final result being 10–9 to Warrington. St. Helens Recs. and Wigan were disposed of on the way to that particular victory. As well as doing well in the league the team had reached the Challenge Cup final for the seventh time. This was the first time Warrington played at Wembley. The Wire lost 21–17 to Huddersfield. In the 1933–34 season, Warrington played Australia and for once were beaten. Warrington also had the honour of playing the first rugby league match against a French side, captained by Jean Galia. In a season of firsts a match was played in Dublin to introduce the game to Ireland. A good crowd saw Wigan beat Warrington by 32–19.

The highlight of the 1935–36 season was a place in the Challenge Cup final at Wembley. Barrow were beaten in the first round, the second round was drawn away at Halifax with Warrington winning the replay at Wilderspool 18–15. Wigan were then beaten 5–2 to set up a semi-final against Salford at Wigan. Warrington was short of regular players and were thought to stand little chance, but as ever in they rose to the occasion to gain victory. Fifteen special trains were laid on as the town made its way to London for the final, however Leeds ran out 18–2 winners.

In the 1937–38 season, Oldham and Widnes were both knocked out by Warrington as they headed for another Lancashire Cup victory, this time 8–5 over Barrow. During World War II, it was difficult to play matches and therefore pay the bills. To help out the club committee decided that a Limited Company of 10,000 £1 shares was to be created. The Warrington Football Club Limited was born. Warrington dropped out of the wartime Lancashire league in 1941–42 and did not return to league competition until 1945–46.

Post World War Two[edit]

The early post-war years saw a boom in rugby league in general, and the glory years of the Warrington club. A winger named Brian Bevan made his début for Warrington in 1945.

With other stars such as Harry Bath and Gerry Helme, the Wire won all the code's major honours, including the League Championship for the only times in their history in 1947–48, 1953–54 and 1954–55. Warrington defeated Huddersfield in the 1947–48 league semi-final. The final, against Bradford Northern, was staged at Maine Road and Warrington took the trophy by a margin of 17–5. Warrington reached the 1948–49 Lancashire Cup final, Wigan took the trophy. In the league Warrington lost only five matches all season. Huddersfield exacted one of Wire's few defeats in the play-off final. The record attendance at Wilderspool was set on 13 March 1948 when 34,304 spectators saw Warrington play Wigan. Another good cup run took the Wire to the 1950 Challenge Cup final. This time they were to play local rivals Widnes. They led 14-nil at half time, eventually taking the trophy by 19-nil. In 1951–52 Ces Mountford was appointed coach with a ten-year contract.[6]

Warrington did well in the league in 1953–54 and made it to the top four play-off. St. Helens came to Wilderspool and were well beaten 11–5. They despatched Leeds in the Challenge Cup to get to their second final of the season, they were to play Halifax in both games. The intense Wembley final ended in a draw, two goals a piece. The replay was held at Odsal and a record 102,569 paid to see Warrington defeat Halifax 8–4. Thousands more got in for free and estimates of the total crowd were in the region of 120–130,000. The week after the two teams met again in the League Cup, at Maine Road, Manchester. Warrington secured another victory by four goals to Halifax's two goals and a try. The club had done the League and Cup double to add to the Lancashire Cup they had already won. In 1954 in the Challenge Cup final replay at Odsal, Bradford, but the Wire beat Halifax in the semi-final of the 1954–55 League Cup passing the way to the final against Oldham at Maine Road. For the second consecutive season Warrington took the honours, the final score was 7–3.

The 1955–56 season saw a tournament titled the ITV Floodlit Competition. Eight clubs participated in a series of games played at football grounds in the London area, with Warrington eventually running out 43–18 victors over Leigh at Loftus Road. Warrington made it to the 1956 Championship final held at Maine Road but lost to Workington Town.

On 19 January 1957, Warrington launched a lottery, which played an important part in the club's finances in future seasons. In the 1959–60 season, they won the Lancashire Cup for the first time in 22 years, playing all their games away from home. St. Helens were the final hurdle but the Wire managed a 5–4 win at Central Park.

In 1961, Warrington reached the RL Championship final held at Odsal, but Leeds had total control over the match and ran out 25–10. This also turned out to be the last match for long serving coach Ces Mountford. Ernie Ashcroft took over as coach from the departed Ces Mountford for the 1961–62 season.

Easter Monday 1962 saw Brian Bevan's last match for Warrington. During the early part of the 1965–66 season floodlights were installed and a friendly match against Wigan was arranged. They were officially switched on for the match on Tuesday 28 September, Wigan winning the match. Warrington's home game against Widnes became the first rugby league match to be broadcast on BBC albeit only to the south of England. The final of the Lancashire Cup was reached by gaining a 21–10 victory over Oldham in the semi-final. The final against Rochdale Hornets, at Knowsley Road, was won 16–5.

1970s onwards[edit]

After a disastrous start to the 1970–71 season, coach Joe Egan decided to stand down. He was replaced by Peter Harvey. The change made little difference as the club won only 11 out of 24 matches. The club also had debts of around £33,000. An Extraordinary General Meeting of the shareholders was called and they agreed to increase the share capital to £30,000 by creating 20,000 'A' ordinary shares at £1 each. All of these 'A' shares were sold to Ossie Davies and were worth five votes for each share, rather than the usual one. The directors of the old board agreed to resign and Mr. Davies who had been Vice Chairman of the old board, became Chairman of the new board. Alex Murphy joined Warrington as player-coach on 20 May 1971.

The indifferent league form continued in 1974–75, as did the early exit from several cup competitions, the Challenge Cup being the exception. Warrington again reached Wembley to face Widnes; the Chemics winning 14–7. The first trophy was the Locker Cup won with a 14–9 victory over Wigan. Next was the Players No. 6 trophy, the final at Wigan against Rochdale Hornets providing a 27–16 win. Salford put an end to the success with a defeat in the first round of the BBC 2 Floodlit Trophy. A new competition, the Captain Morgan Trophy, provided the club with its third trophy of the season. Wins over Wigan, Castleford and Leeds led to the final against Featherstone Rovers which Warrington won 4-nil. However, the team continued to perform poorly in the league. Warrington defeated Huddersfield, Huyton and then Dewsbury were defeated to get to Wembley for the first time in twenty years. Warrington beat 24–9 Featherstone Rovers for the second time that season in a cup final to win the Challenge Cup. In the Merit Trophy play-off, Warrington played and beat Hull, Bradford Northern and then Wakefield Trinity in the semi final. The final at Wigan was against St. Helens, and after a great struggle Warrington won their fifth trophy, 13–12. Alex Murphy then retired as a player but continued to coach the side.

Poor league performance continued in 1977–78 but Warrington again made it to the Regal trophy final. Warrington beat Widnes 9–4. In 1978, Warrington appointed Billy Benyon as Alex Murphy's successor. A solid year round performance saw Warrington finish second in the league, losing only 8 matches all year. A major highlight of the season was the controversial 15–12 victory over the Ashes-winning 1978 Kangaroo tourists. For the second year running the club reached the John Player Trophy final, but were unable to repeat the previous year's victory, the match going to Widnes by 16–4.[7]

The 1980–81 season brought the Lancashire Cup and the John Player Trophy. After consistently good performances in the league they were League Championship runners up. Australian Brian Johnson was appointed the club's head coach and manager in 1988.[8]

In 1990 Warrington made it to the final of the Challenge Cup at Wembley Stadium and faced arch rivals Wigan. Warrington lost 34–16 and this is the last appearance in the Challenge Cup final before their success in 2009.

Warrington won the Regal Trophy in 1992 beating Bradford Northern 12–2 at Headingley, Leeds.

In June 1993 due to financial pressures, Warrington listed 13 players for a total of £340k when they refuse lower contract payments

Warrington did make it to the final of the Regal Trophy in 1994 but lost 40–10 to Wigan at McAlpine Stadium, Huddersfield. With the advent of Super League, several mergers between clubs were proposed. Warrington were scheduled to merge with Widnes to form Cheshire who would compete in Super League. This was, however, resisted. Warrington were awarded a place in the Super League and Widnes were at one stage given a place but then were dropped and had to be relegated to Division One.

Super League – summer rugby[edit]

In 1996, the first tier of British rugby league clubs played the inaugural Super League season[9] and changed from a winter to a summer season.[10]

John Dorahy became coach in 1996. Warrington added "Wolves" to their name; wolf symbols had started to appear on Warrington shirts in the early nineties, and there was a wolf featured in the middle of the town's coat of arms. To mark this change Warrington produced a new logo which is still in place to date. Dorahy resigned in March 1997, before the end of the season with Warrington sitting on the bottom of the Super League ladder.[11]

In 1997, Darryl van der Velde took over as head coach. Plans to move from Wilderspool Stadium were announced with Burtonwood the likely site. The former brewery on Winwick Road was chosen to be the new home for Warrington and Tesco were also to develop on the land with their first ever supermarket in the town. A lengthy planning process finally ended with permission finally given for a 14,206 capacity stadium and supermarket to be built. The capacity was reduced to 13,500 on safety grounds after the first match. In 2000, retired Australian captain and scrum-half, Allan Langer came out of retirement to play in Super League for the Warrington Wolves. He captained the side and took them to within one match of the Challenge Cup Final in 2000.[12]

Steve Anderson succeeded van der Velde in August 2001, he was replaced by his assistant David Plange mid-season following a run of 11 defeats. Paul Cullen was appointed head coach in 2002,[9] replacing Plange. Their best season in Super League has been the 2005 season (Super League X), where they finished in 4th place and earned a home tie in the playoffs. They are the only club never to have been relegated from the top flight of rugby league, throughout their long history. 2010 saw their best-ever super league finish ever and best league finish for some time finishing 3rd missing out on 2nd by a small number of points to St Helens. Unfortunately despite challenge cup success and good league position Warrington were knocked out of the 2010 play offs early.

Wilderspool to Halliwell Jones Stadium – 2003[edit]

Warrington's first season in the Halliwell Jones Stadium saw slight underachievement on the pitch reflected in their finishing position of eighth in Super League, though they did make the semi finals of the Challenge Cup. However, they recorded a significant increase in their average attendances and midway through the season the club was purchased by events promoter Simon Moran. Moran immediately released fresh investment into the club, enabling coach Paul Cullen to sign Great Britain centre Martin Gleeson for a club record fee reported in the region of £200,000 as well as New Zealand internationals Henry Fa'afili and Logan Swann.

Australian half-back Andrew Johns played 3 games for the club when his Australian club Newcastle concluded their season. He wore the number 31 (the club was refused permission for Johns to wear 77) and is rumoured to have been paid around £40,000 (A$100,000) per match for the Wires. The signing caused controversy for a number of reasons: if the Wires had made the Super League Grand Final, it would have clashed with the Kangaroos Tri-Nations test against New Zealand in Sydney, Australia; also, many people questioned why the Wires were allowed to bring in a player in time for the Super League play-offs after he had finished playing a full season in Australia. The signing and subsequent confusion over the rules led other Super League clubs to follow the example set by the Wires and signed their own Antipodean players on short-term contracts.

On 22 September 2006, Warrington beat Leeds 18–17 at Headingley to progress to the second round of the Super League playoffs. This was the first time during the Super League era that the Wires had progressed past the first round of the playoffs. However, they were unable to progress any further as they were beaten 40–24 by Bradford Northern at Odsal Stadium.

For the 2007 season Warrington signed current Great Britain international Adrian Morley on a four-year deal from the Sydney Roosters NRL club, Paul Johnson, another Great Britain international, from Bradford Northern on a three-year deal and New Zealand international back rower or centre Vinnie Anderson, 27, on a three-year deal from St Helens paying a £50k transfer fee.

Warrington finished the 2007 season in 7th place in the table which was seen as a disaster for the club following the impressive signings made during the close season. Finishing 7th resulted in Warrington missing out on the end of season playoffs for the first time in 3 years with local rivals Wigan pipping the Wire on the last weekend of the season.

Warrington have already signed four players for the 2008 season. They are Michael Monaghan, who has signed from Manly on a 4-year-deal, Vinnie Anderson's brother Louis from the New Zealand Warriors, Manly Sea Eagles winger Chris Hicks, both on 2-year-deals and Melbourne Storm centre Matt King on a four-year deal.

Warrington announced that Australasian trio Chris Leikvoll, Brent Grose, and Henry Fa'afili could not be retained for the 2008 season due to salary cap restrictions.

After a storming start to the season, Chris Bridge was once again injured with a ruptured achilles tendon and this ruled him out for the rest of the season. Stuart Reardon, full back for the team, is also expected to have a full reconstruction of his achilles tendon, gained at the clash against St Helens and is expected to be out for the rest of the season. Paul Wood is also likely to be out for the season, after a further injury to his shoulder.

In a match on 8 May Matt King was knocked out in a game against Wigan from a high tackle that caused Wigan player Richard Mathers to be sent off. King was stretchered off, but only received slight concussion. Utility back Paul Johnson missed most of the season after it was confirmed that he needed a full cruciate knee ligament reconstruction. Johnson was injured during the second half of Warrington's 40–34 cup defeat at St Helens.

On 27 May 2008 Head Coach Paul Cullen resigned from the coaching role at the club following a run of only one victory in 7 league fixtures. James Lowes was appointed as the new Head Coach of the club and given a contract until the end of the 2010 season.

The club went on to finish the season in sixth position in the table and securing a playoff tie away to Catalans Dragons. The Wolves lost 46–8 ending what was another season to forget for the club.

For 2009, the Wolves recruited Garreth Carvell from Hull for an undisclosed fee on a three-year deal, along with Micky Higham from Wigan Warriors on a two-year deal.

Tony Smith era[edit]

2009[edit]

On 5 March, after losing all three of their three opening games to the Super League XIV season, Warrington removed James Lowes from the position of head coach, and replaced him with then-England coach, Tony Smith who was also given the role of director of rugby.

April 2009 saw Martin Gleeson depart for rivals Wigan and Stuart Reardon leave the club. Reardon then shortly signed for Hull. As part of the deal that took Gleeson to Wigan, Richie Mathers made a return move to Warrington following a short loan deal back in 2002.

On 30 May 2009, Warrington reached the Semi Finals of the Rugby League Challenge Cup, beating Hull Kingston Rovers 24–25 via a drop goal from Lee Briers in Golden Point Extra time to earn a place in the last four with Wigan, St Helens and Huddersfield (who at that point had still yet to play their matches). The semi final draw pitted the Wire against Wigan, and St Helens against Huddersfield.

On 8 August 2009, Warrington beat Wigan to reach Wembley for the first time in 19 years and despite only averaging crowds of 8,000 in recent seasons (2009 average attendance 8,155) they sold just over 34,500 tickets for the Challenge Cup Final.

Wolves faced the Huddersfield in the final at Wembley Stadium in front of a 76,560 crowd. Warrington scored first after a charge down with Richie Mathers going over the line under the sticks. Warrington eventually won the game 25–16 with Michael Monaghan winning the Lance Todd Trophy for the man-of-the-match performance.

Warrington returned home from Wembley with the cup and was greeted by more than 100,000 fans who had been starved of success for 35 years. This was their first Challenge Cup win since 1974, and the team arrived home on an open top bus, and paraded the trophy round the town before heading to the town hall.

Warrington finished the 2009 season in lowly 10th place missing out on the play-offs yet again. After the final game of the season Chairman Lord Doug Hoyle announced that he will be stepping down from the post and leaving the Wolves.

2010[edit]

Signings made for the 2010 season are Richard Myler, Ryan Atkins and David Solomona. England Internationals Myler, from Salford City Reds, and Atkins from Wakefield Trinity Wildcats have both agreed 4-year contracts keeping them at the club until 2013. These two players have signed for combined fees totalling in excess of £300,000. Kiwi and Samoan International Solomona has agreed a 1-year contract. The departing players for Warrington are Paul Rauhihi (retired), Steve Pickersgill (Widnes) and Paul Johnson (Wakefield).

For the start of pre-season training for the 2010 season Warrington will have a centralised training facility based at the University of Chester's Padgate campus. This will give the first team access to a new purpose built state-of-the-art gym, playing facilities, physiotherapy rooms and video analysis suites, providing the Warrington Wolves First Team with a 'Centre of Excellence' for all year round training.

On 8 August 2010, the Wolves emphatically beat Catalans Dragons 54–12 at the Halton Stadium, Widnes to reach the Challenge Cup Final for the second consecutive season. Warrington went on to win the final, defeating Leeds Rhinos 30–6. Once again over 35,000 Wolves supporters travelled down to Wembley Stadium to see the Wolves lift the trophy for the second successive time, this being the first time in the club's history this has been done. On the return to Warrington the following day over 100,000 people lined the streets of the town to welcome home the team and the trophy.

The 2010 Super League season saw the Wolves finish in 3rd place the club's highest ever finish in the Super League era. Warrington qualified for the end of season play-offs only to lose both fixtures to St. Helens and Huddersfield Giants. This meaning the Wolves have only won 1 of the club's 6 playoff fixtures to date.

2011[edit]

The 2011 Super League season saw the Wolves recruit Joel Monaghan and Brett Hodgson. The Wolves ended their St. Helens hoodoo with victory in the away fixture which was played at the Halton Stadium, Widnes. The Wolves secured their double over the St. Helens with a 35–28 triumph over the rivals in the reverse fixture later in the season.

2011 saw the Wolves register impressive victories away to Leeds Rhinos (6–42), Bradford Bulls (14–58) and Salford City Reds (0–60). They also registered big scorelines at home to Harlequins RL (84–6), Bradford Bulls (64–6), Wakefield Trinity Wildcats (66–12) and Castleford Tigers (62–0).

On 20 August 2011, the Wolves beat Catalans Dragons 12–25 in Perpignan to register the clubs 8th successive league victory for the first time in the Super League era.

0n 9 September 2011, the Wolves beat Hull to secure the league leaders shield for the first time.

Warrington were beaten in the playoff semi final by Leeds Rhinos who eventually went on to win the grand final beating St Helens at Old Trafford on 8 October.

Going into the 2012 Super League season the Warrington club was pleased to announced that they now have over 8,000 season tickets, which is a record for Warrington and a vast improvement on the crowds of just 3/4,000 in the Wilderspool days. The club are working to improve this to match the big Super League clubs such as Wigan, St Helens, Leeds and Hull who have well over 10,000 season ticket holders.

2012[edit]

In 2012 the Wolves enjoyed another successful season in both the league and cup competitions. In the 2012 Challenge Cup the Wolves crowned cup winners for the 3rd time in 4 years following a 35–18 victory over Leeds Rhinos at Wembley Stadium. Over 35,000 Wolves supporters made the trip to see the side bring back the famous trophy. The Wolves also made it through to the Super League Grand Final and were backed by 40,000 fans at the theatre of dreams. The Wolves faced the Rhinos for the right to become champions but it was Leeds who held on to become back to back champions.

2013[edit]

In 2013 Warrington finished Super League XVIII in 2nd place with 41 points, only 1 point behind League Leaders Shield winners Huddersfield Giants. Warrington won their qualifying playoff against Leeds with the final score 40-20, Ben Westwood scored 4 tries. The result put Warrington through to the Qualifying Semi-Final against Huddersfield, who were defeated 30-22.

In the grand final Warrington Wolves faced Wigan Warriors and lost by 30-16.

Rivalries[edit]

Warrington Wolves have several rivalries, the fiercest of which is with Widnes Vikings. Widnes have been out of the top flight for a large period of the Super League era so the rivalry is not as fierce as it used to be. However, Widnes returned to Super league in 2012 and Warrington won all three derby games with an aggregate score of 166–30, whilst in 2013 Widnes were the only team that Warrington failed to beat.

Wigan Warriors are also big local rivals, which has been heightened in recent years due to the two clubs' standing as leading Super League teams.

Since the start of the Super League the fixtures against St. Helens have become a fierce battle due to the St. Helens holding a hoodoo over the Warrington. From 1992 to 2010, Warrington only managed to beat Saints once (in 2001). However in 2011 and 2012, the Wire have managed to win 3 of 6 derbies, including a win in the 2012 Playoff Semi Final. Warrington are unbeaten at Saints' new Langtree Park ground. Saints continued their dominance with a 22–10 victory the next year.

Other lesser rivalries include Salford City Reds and Leigh Centurions for geographical reasons.

2014 squad[edit]

* Announced on 14 November 2013:


2014 Warrington Wolves squad
First team squad Coaching staff

Head coach

Assistant coaches


Legend:
  • (c) Captain
  • (vc) Vice captain

Updated: 14 November 2013
Source(s): 2014 Squad Numbers


2015 transfers[edit]

Gains

Player Signed from Contract Length Date
Fiji Ashton Sims North Queensland Cowboys 2 Years July 2014
England Daryl Clark Castleford Tigers 4 Years August 2014

Losses

Player Signed for Contract Length Date
Australia Michael Monaghan Retire N/A May 2014

Major honours[edit]

Winners (3 times): 1947–48, 1953–54, 1954–55

Runners Up (8 times): 1925–26, 1934–35, 1936–37, 1948–49, 1950–51, 1960–61, 2012, 2013

Winners (8 times): 1904–05, 1906–07, 1949–50, 1953–54, 1973–74, 2009, 2010, 2012

Runners Up (8 times): 1900–01, 1903–04, 1912–13, 1927–28, 1932–33, 1935–36, 1974–75, 1989–90

Winners (2 times): 1985–86, 2011

Runners Up (3 times): 1976–77, 1986–87, 2012, 2013

Winners (9 times): 1921–22, 1929–30, 1932–33, 1937–38, 1959–60, 1965–66, 1980–81, 1982–83, 1989–90

Runners Up (6 times): 1906–07, 1948–49, 1950–51, 1967–68, 1985–86,1987–88

  • Lancashire League

Winners (8 times): 1937–38, 1947–48, 1948–49, 1950–51, 1953–54, 1954–55, 1955–56, 1967–68

Winners (4 times): 1973–74, 1977–78, 1980–81, 1990–91

Runners Up (3 times): 1978–79, 1986–87, 1994–95

  • ITV Floodlit Competition:

Winners (once): 1955–56

Records[edit]

Record Victory – 112–0 vs Swinton Lions 20 May 2011
Record Defeat – 0–80 vs St. Helens 4 January 1996
Record Attendance – 102,569 vs Halifax (Played at Odsal Stadium, Bradford) 5 May 1954

Most Appearances - 620 Brian Bevan
Most Tries - 740 Brian Bevan
Longest Winning Streak - 21 (April 1948 - November 1948)
Longest Super League Winning Streak - 10 (June 2011 - September 2011)
Most Goals in a Game – 16 – Lee Briers vs Swinton Lions 20 May 2011
Most Tries in a Game – 7 – Brian Bevan vs Leigh 29 March 49; & Brian Bevan vs Bramley 27 April 1953
Most Points in a Game – 44 (16 goals, 3 tries) – Lee Briers vs Swinton Lions 20 May 2011
Most Goals in a Season – 170 (inc 13 drop-goals) – Steve Hesford 1978/79
Most Tries in a Season – 66 – Brian Bevan 1952/53
Most Points in a Season – 363 – Harry Bath 1952–53

Players earning international caps while at Warrington[edit]

Hall of Fame inductees[edit]

Other notable players[edit]

Coaching register[edit]

Coach Years Matches Won Draws Lost Win %
Ces Mountford 1951-1961 433 282 13 138 65%
Ernie Ashcroft 1961-1967 252 133 9 110 53%
Jackie Fleming 1967-1968 67 41 1 25 61%
Joe Egan 1968-1970 73 32 4 37 44%
Peter Harvey 1970-1971 26 12 1 13 46%
Alex Murphy 1971-1978 308 176 14 118 57%
Billy Benyon 1978-1982 154 93 6 55 60%
Kevin Ashcroft 1982-1984 90 50 5 35 56%
Reg Bowden 1984-1986 61 32 0 29 52%
Tony Barrow 1986-1988 109 68 4 37 62%
Brian Johnson 1988-1996 260 140 8 112 54%
John Dorahy 1996-1997 30 15 0 15 50%
Daryll Van de Velde 1997-2001 140 59 3 78 42%
Steve Anderson 2001-2002 14 4 1 9 29%
David Plange 2002-2002 16 4 0 12 25%
Paul Cullen 2002-2008 179 87 2 90 49%
James Lowes 2008-2009 16 7 0 9 44%
Tony Smith 2009–Present 191 138 3 50 72%

Sponsorship[edit]

In late 1999 Greenalls was acquired by Scottish & Newcastle. The 2000 season home kit carried the Greenalls brand, whilst the away kit carried another S&N brand, John Smiths.

Kit supplier[edit]

Challenge Cup History[edit]

Year Placing Result Notes
2013 Semi Final Lost to Hull FC (12-16)
2012 Final Beat Leeds Rhinos (35-18) Winners
2011 Quarter Final Lost to Wigan Warriors (24-44)
2010 Final Beat Leeds Rhinos (33-6) Winners
2009 Final Beat Huddersfield Giants (25-14) Winners
2008 Round 5 Lost to St. Helens (34-40)
2007 Quarter Final Lost to St. Helens (14-25)
2006 Quarter Final Lost to Hull KR (36-40)
2005 Round 4 Lost to Leeds Rhinos (22-26)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Stadium History". Warrington Wolves. Retrieved 24 February 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c "Northern Union". Warrington Wolves. Retrieved 24 February 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Part Of The Union". Warrington Wolves. Retrieved 24 February 2012. 
  4. ^ http://www.warringtonwolves.org/100-years-since-wire-took-on-the-aussies-for-the-first-time-2372
  5. ^ http://www.wire2wolves.com/history.php?era_id=2&art_id=39&year=1913&browse_level=3
  6. ^ "Give It To Bev". Warrington Wolves. Retrieved 24 February 2012. 
  7. ^ "Changing Times". Warrington Wolves. Retrieved 24 February 2012. 
  8. ^ http://fulltext.ausport.gov.au/fulltext/2001/ascmedia/20010730.asp
  9. ^ a b "The Super League". Warrington Wolves. Retrieved 24 February 2012. 
  10. ^ Dave Hadfield (20 December 1995). "Rugby's pounds 87m deal gives Murdoch transfer veto". The Independent (UK). Retrieved 6 May 2009. 
  11. ^ "Dorahy quits the Wolf pack" (fee required). The People (London). 30 March 1997. Retrieved 19 January 2008. 
  12. ^ Hadfield, Dave (6 March 2000). "Questionnaire: ALLAN LANGER – Australian Test scrum-half and captain of Warrington". The Independent (London, England, UK). Retrieved 15 October 2013. 
  13. ^ http://www.rugbyleague.org/features/content.php?feat_id=276&featcat_id=32
  14. ^ http://www.warringtonwolves.org/warrington-wolves-announces-emirates-sponsorship-6648

External links[edit]