Leeds Rhinos 18 - 35 Warrington Wolves

Match info: Challenge Cup at Wembley

Date: 25/08/2012 KO: 14:30 Att: 79,180

Home team/scorers Scores Away team/scorers

Leeds

TriesKirke (19) Watkins (69, 79)ConversionsSinfield (19, 24, 40)

18
vs
35

Warrington

TriesMonaghan (7) Waterhouse (28) Riley (49) Atkins (55) McCarthy (59) Hodgson (74)ConversionsHodgson (7, 28, 55, 59, 74)Drop GoalsBriers (63)

FT (ht: 10-12)

  • Last Updated: August 25 2012, 18:52 BST

Post-match reaction to Warrington's 35-18 victory over Leeds.

The celebrations start for Warrington
The celebrations start for Warrington

Warrington full-back Brett Hodgson was humbled after being awarded the Lance Todd Trophy for his starring role in the Wolves' latest Carnegie Challenge Cup final win.

The veteran Australian recovered from a heavy bang to the head early in the second half to set up two critical tries in Warrington's 35-18 defeat of Leeds at Wembley.

The 34-year-old capped a fine display by kicking five goals and crossing for a late try to put the seal on the Wolves' third cup win in four years.

Hodgson said: "It's huge. I have been very fortunate through my career to play with some great players, win an NRL Grand Final and now this.

"It is very humbling to receive such an honour. It is going to be something I look back on with great admiration and I am very excited and honoured to accept it."

Hodgson was involved in the game's major turning point when he was knocked over by a powerful challenge from Leeds forward Kylie Leuluai.

Warrington led only 12-10 at the time and Hodgson, who ducked into Leuluai's shoulder, lost possession and Brett Delaney scooped up to cross for Leeds.

But the Rhinos were to be denied as video referee Phil Bentham, after ruling Delaney's tackle legal, spotted a double knock-on and chalked off the try.

Hodgson recovered and helped put over Chris Riley and Ryan Atkins for tries that put the Wolves into a decisive lead.

"I was trying to get out of his way as quick as possible," Hodgson said.

"He is a champion bloke and there was nothing wrong with his tackle - he just got me good. I was probably lucky not to concede a try in that play."

Warrington went on to establish control as Tyrone McCarthy and then Hodgson crossed, with veteran Lee Briers adding a drop goal.

Joel Monaghan and Trent Waterhouse had earlier touched down in a first half played mostly in torrential rain.

Wolves coach Tony Smith said: "There were probably a lot of crucial points but it is about taking your opportunities when they arrive.

"In these sort of matches sometimes you only get a few and if you don't take them it can hurt you.

"You have got to make them happen and I thought we did make them happen, particularly in the second half."

On Hodgson's performance, Smith said: "He was terrific for us. He copped a pounding today. He took some knocks, but he got up. He is a tough bloke.

"I've said before he's not the fastest, strongest - or even the best-looking - but he knows how to play footy.

"What he lacks in pace and size compared to other full-backs he makes up for in smartness.

"He orchestrated some of those tries - they were planned by him, not the coaches."

Leeds played their part in a competitive first half, scoring through Ian Kirke, but struggled as Warrington built momentum in the second period.

Kallum Watkins went over twice late on but they were mere consolation.

The Super League champions have now lost on their last six appearances in the Challenge Cup final, including in each of the three years - two of them to the Wolves.

Coach Brian McDermott said: "We spent the majority of the first half without momentum and I thought we were in good nick to come in within touching distance.

"We found ourselves in a situation there where Kylie Leuluai dislodged the ball legally and it was a disallowed try.

"I thought that was a big, big part of what happened in the second half.

"Yes we need to be better and we conceded a few tries just after that, and we need to be able to stop those.

"But when you hope when you find yourselves in situations that you plan for you would get your rewards."

McDermott was bemused by video referee Phil Bentham's interpretation of the Hodgson-Leuluai incident.

He said: "I didn't see a knock-on from anybody. I just thought the ball came out of the back of his arm.

"That said, Warrington were the better team on the day. They played well and deserved the win.

"We dust ourselves off, stay tight as a group, learn from it.

"We have got one hell of a lot of young players in that group who have gained some valuable experience from that."