Super League: Tony Smith delighted with Wolves display in Perpignan
Last Updated: 07/09/13 9:48pm
Tony Smith: tough and smart display
Warrington coach Tony Smith praised his side's battling qualities as they defied awful conditions and a late scare to secure a 14-12 win over Catalan Dragons ahead of the Super League play-offs.
"We rate that performance very highly, not the win as such, but the performance with the difficulties we had to overcome," Smith said.
"I thought both teams were really gutsy tonight. I was so pleased it was raining.
"It would have been a much more attractive game had it stayed dry, no doubt, both teams like to throw the ball around.
"Catalans probably throw it around more than us but this time of year, that isn't going to happen too often.
"We rate that performance very highly, not the win as such, but the performance with the difficulties we had to overcome."
"We both had to rein our horns in and play a bit tougher and a bit smarter, and kick better and earlier in the tackle count - all the things that Kevin Sinfield has been doing for the last five or six years in getting his team home."
Smith was pleased with the physicality his side produced, especially in defence, in testing conditions.
"I was pleased it was raining but probably didn't want that much rain and it took it to extremes," he added. "It was great for us, we had to stick to our guns and stick to our plans.
"I thought our defence was outstanding, it forced a lot of errors from the Catalans and physically we were very tough.
"I like that and I especially like that heading into the play-offs and we need to back that up next week."
Catalan coach Laurent Frayssinous found plenty of reason for optimism ahead of his side's trip to the KC Stadium to face Hull next weekend.
"I think we can be optimistic for the play-offs, the objective was to perform in the last four games against Bradford, Wigan, Leeds and Warrington and I think we did that," he said.
"Even if we still have to learn how to win the big games with a play-off intensity, I'm pretty happy with the performance."
Frayssinous believes the conditions will have hardened his side for play-off intensity of the next month.
"If we want to play in and win a grand final, those are the conditions that we have to play in and learn to win in," he said.
"We have a quality team when the ground is hard, but when it is wet we have to learn to deal with that and be better."