Taskmaster Steve Price focusing on the present rather than the past

Steve Price is asked what he’s made of the season so far.

After a pause, he starts off his answer by clarifying something.

“I’m a pretty hard taskmaster.”

But it’s his attention to detail and no stone unturned mentality that has played a pivotal role in Warrington’s turnaround under the pragmatic Australian.

When Price arrived at the club, he inherited a Wolves squad that had gone stale under Tony Smith and criticised for having a soft underbelly.

From the day he arrived, Price set his stall out. He put emphasis on core values and stressed the importance of being tough to beat. It wasn’t an approach often seen at a club that has prided itself on its spectacular attack and eye-catching recruitment.

At first, the club and the coach didn’t seem like an obvious fit, but less than 12 months into his tenure Price has taken the club to Wembley and is 80 minutes away from a second major final in his maiden campaign.

“I’ve said from day one it’s not about me,” Price was keen to stress.

“It’s about the club and the players. I’m proud of the guys and how they’ve carried themselves. For me, I just want to give them the best game plan possible that can win them the game.

“We’re not looking too far ahead of ourselves. We’re coming up against the benchmark team, we need all 17 to play out of our skins.”

Despite his impressive start so far, Price still has the biggest hurdle to jump; prove that Warrington are more than just pretenders.

Many before him have tried and failed to bring an end to the chant that haunts those on the terraces of the Halliwell Jones Stadium, but Price has no interest in previous failings, other than their shortcomings at Wembley, and how that experience can help his side be better.

“What’s happened in the past has happened in the past,” he said,

“I hope what happened a few weeks ago can be truly stimulating and driving us to be the best that we can be.

“We’ve certainly gone under the radar. Saints raging favourites and rightly so. I have a huge amount of respect for them, but I have the utmost confidence in my blokes to deliver the game plan and we’ll be confident come Thursday. We’ve got a plan, if we stay at it we’ll give ourselves every chance come Thursday.

“I was disappointed with how we played at Wembley, proud to get ourselves in that position but not what we did on the day. I’d like to think that’s still burning inside and willing to learn from that and give ourselves every opportunity to play in the big games over the next two weeks.”