Warrington vs. Salford Betting Tips: Wolves to continue impressive start
Warrington Wolves were a laughing stock in Super League last season, finishing 11th and only avoiding relegation due to the ineptitude of Toulouse. In 2023, however, The Wire look reborn and have beaten both Leeds and Huddersfield in a strong start to their campaign.
Salford began with a gritty win at Leigh but took a step backwards last weekend when losing at home to Hull KR. The Red Devils looked a long way from their swashbuckling best last season and we fear for them in our preview.
After a couple of winners last weekend (Hull FC to beat Leeds at 6/4 and Ken Sio First Try Scorer at 8/1) Billy Grimshaw is in good tipping form and has a trio of bets for the televised Super League clash...
Warrington vs. Salford Odds
There is no doubting Warrington's Achilles heel last season was their soft underbelly, which led to Daryl Powell undergoing a massive rebuild of his pack in the off-season. In came Paul Vaughan, Josh McGuire, Sam Kasiano and Gil Dudson and out went a host of underperforming and undersized props.
The Wire now have arguably the biggest pack in the league and with James Harrison, Tom Mikaele and Joe Bullock looking like men possessed to retain their shirt once the full squad is fit, expect Warrington to bully plenty of teams this season.
The form in particular of their #8 and #10 Harrison and Vaughan has had Warrington fans licking their lips about the team's prospects, with Harrison showing signs of why his coach has compared him to Alex Walmsley and Vaughan dismissing any concerns he was over in Super League for a holiday.
The former Kangaroo means business in Cheshire. George Williams looks to have found his foil in new half-back partner Josh Drinkwater, and with blistering pace on the edges provided by Matty Ashton and Josh Thewlis, with the fastest of the lot at full-back in Matt Dufty, The Wire already look like top four contenders.
Warrington vs. Salford Tips
As discussed in the previous paragraph, Warrington look like a threat this season and although I am keeping the faith with Salford and still think they will come good when the sun starts to shine and they can play their trademark flair rugby, the Wolves should have enough to win with something to spare here.
They already look a settled side with quality all over the field, and what will have pleased fans most about last week's win away at Huddersfield was the steely goal line defence. This was something seriously amiss last year and will come in handy against Salford at the Halliwell Jones if the Red Devils have any spells of possession.
The suspicion, however, is that Salford simply won't get as much ball as the Giants earned last week. Warrington should win the territory battle and with Drinkwater's expert left boot directing them around the park I can see them dominating both field position and the ball. Salford looked seriously clunky last week as they wasted chance after chance against Hull KR and although their spine could click at any moment and pile some points on somebody, tomorrow probably won't be the night.
Expect Warrington to start fast in front of a buoyant home crowd as they did against Leeds a fortnight ago and perhaps even stretch out to an unassailable lead. Salford could find breaching the Wolves' defence a challenge if evidence of this season is to be trusted over that of last year, so backing the Wolves -12 looks a good bet on home soil.
Warrington's defence is resoundingly meaner in 2023 and with Vaughan driving standards in defence, with the rest of the pack matching his intensity, expect the Wire to fight to defend their try line and Salford to be kept to a low score, while Warrington's attacking threats of Thewlis, Williams, Ashton, Dufty et al could profit against the Red Devils.
Watching Salford toil and then wilt against Hull KR last weekend, something that was evident was the Red Devils' struggle with attacking kicks. Jordan Abdull had a blast for the Robins and set up most tries for his side, including one with a grubber for his number 11 Frankie Halton. Warrington will have been watching intently and in their star stand off George Williams possess a playmaker with one of the best short kicking games in world rugby.
Ryan Brierley is a prolific try-scorer at full-back for Salford but has never impressed in the defensive sphere and if Warrington are to make breaks or dominate field position, Brierley is not the strongest last line of defence. Formerly a half-back, his positioning can be questionable and if Williams is to skip to his favoured left side and look for either a crash ball or grubber through, one man who looks certain to profit is Warrington's number 11 Ben Currie.
Once regarded as one of the most exciting youngsters in Super League, Currie's full potential was cruelly robbed by a devastating ACL injury followed by another to the other knee on his return. This stole Currie of two seasons and since returning he has been less of the exciting line running try-scorer and more of a hard worker. That said, he can still spot a gap and has enough pace to finish tries off, so with his plentiful routes to points he rates a solid bet in the try-scorer markets.
I will be backing Currie first, last and anytime, but for tipping purposes will go with just a wager on him to open the scoring at a generous looking 20/1 with Unibet, for all there is plenty of potential for Warrington's wide men to fill their boots, which should help our main bet.