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Wane: Lauaki needs to be smarter
Wigan forward Epalahame Lauaki was said to be "devastated" after conceding the late penalties that enabled Warrington to snatch a 22-20 victory at the DW Stadium to go top of Stobart Super League.
The former Hull prop was twice placed on report by referee Richard Silverwood for foul play in the final 15 minutes and Warrington full-back Brett Hodgson made him pay each time with goals that overturned a 20-18 deficit.
"He's absolutely devastated," said Wigan coach Shaun Wane. "He thinks he's lost us the game. I rate him and he's been great for me this year. He was great again tonight but he needs to be smarter. He let himself down by not concentrating on his tackle technique."
Wigan's Pat Richards scored a try and kicked two goals to go past 2,000 points for the club but Hodgson had the final say on only his third appearance of the season, kicking five of his six goal attempts to edge an even contest.
The Warriors had led 12-6 thanks to tries from Gareth Hock and Michael McIlorum but conceded tries to Ryan Atkins, Joel Monaghan and Lee Briers to suffer a third defeat of the season.
"It was probably good to watch but it was disappointing from my point of view," added Wane. "If we had been smart and showed some composure in the last 20 minutes we would have won that game. We need to be better. I've said that a few times this year. We've a lot to work on."
Warrington displayed tremendous character to three times come from behind but coach Tony Smith believes they will need to find some improvements if they are to justify their Grand Final favouritism.
"We're doing it the hard way," he said. "It was fantastic to watch I'm sure but it's frustrating for players and coaches. There was a bit of anxiety among the players. They are trying hard and they were gutsy and determined.
"Sometimes it goes your way and sometimes it doesn't. There is not much between the top teams. It's fine-line stuff, it could easily have gone Wigan's way tonight."