SATURDAY'S Challenge Cup defeat by holders Warrington was bitterly disappointing - and once again threw up plenty of talking points.

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1. The most controversial incident arising from the Challenge Cup defeat was the killer second try from Josh Charnley just after Saints had clawed it back to a two-point deficit.

Jack Hughes' pass went forward, glancing the head of Anthony Gelling and collected by Charnley well ahead of where the pass was thrown.

It should have been pinged for a forward, but it raised questions on the use of the head.

Remember the law was changed in 1991 after Mike McClennan and Frankie Barrow had got 6ft 7 John Harrison to head the ball over the line for George Mann.

One of three things will happen after this try.

Either someone will hold their hands up and say this was the wrong call, and the ball going forward off the pass is a forward.

Or, a tightening up of the law follow with a directive saying that if the ball goes forward, either deliberately or accidentally, from the head then it will be called back.

If neither of those happens then expect a flurry of activity on training grounds where accidental glancing headers can be honed and worked on from this precedent.

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2. The defeat now continues a worrying pattern of defeats in the games that count against Warrington.

Two Challenge Cup defeats, including last year's Wembley, and three play-off defeats before that make it five times in a row where Saints have been KOd by Wolves.

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This is quite a reversal from the ridiculous run from the mid 90s when Wire couldn't buy a win against Saints.

There is clearly something Warrington are doing that unsettles Saints - maybe the physicality of the Philbin and Murdoch Masila off the bench, the way the Wolves defence is up quickly, even if sometimes offside, to snuff out the attack and their abundant speed to exploit a clocking off or momentary defensive lapse.

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3. Warrington's dominance of possession in the first half largely came off the back of a 40/20 kick misjudged by Lachlan Coote.

The full back tried to play it with his foot and misjudged it, showing the impact that the small margins of errors can make.

From that incident Wire had back-to-back penalties, a goal line drop out and another six again.

Although that passage ended with a disallowed forward pass try, it did succeed in draining the Saints energy levels.

Maybe that fatigue was a contributory factor in those defensive lapses just before the break that left Saints a mountain to climb.

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4. Was that fatigue also partly responsible for the way Saints were unable to put in the same amount of venom into their defence as the game wore on.

It felt like there were a number of times Warrington's ball carriers were either still upright at the completion of the tackle or on their knees ready for a quick play the ball. That is meat and drink to Warrington, especially Daryl Clark, who relish the quick play the ball.

Or is that down to personnel - again going back, is the Wolves bench better equipped to damage Saints when Big Al and Jammer go off. If so, what can be done about that?

It is also worth looking again as to why Warrington got so many six again set restarts compared to Saints and what was being done wrong or right there.

It was very noticeable that as soon as Saints got a set restart in the second half they scored from it.

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5. Losing Mark Percival was a massive blow. And without knowing fully the ins and outs of his injury it is easy for us outside to be wise after the event.

The medical staff were convinced that he was fit and the hamstring was good. Apparently he had been strong in training for a good week and a half before the cup tie.

Clearly it wasn't bullet-proof and his loss provided the chink in the Saints armour that Anthony Gelling exploited.

Saints not only lost a great defender and an attacking threat, as shown in the two Percival offloads for Saints' opener for Jonny Lomax, but his withdrawal and the latter head knock by Jack Welsby was hugely disruptive on the side.

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6. There is no silver lining to losing a cup game - it'll stretch to 12 years since this famous pot graced the Saints sideboard.

But it does take pressure off the fixture card and all eyes will now be on Wigan in Super League on 30 September, so eight more days to lick wounds.

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It was always going to be a different sort of competition this term - and who knows what is going to happen this month or next in the wider world dealing with Covid.

And the players deserve some credit for jumping through those hoops to keep the show on the road this year.

That should temper some of the criticism directed in their direction on the back of a disappointing defeat.