‘Gelling can be best centre in Super League’

Anthony Gelling
Anthony Gelling
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ANTHONY Gelling has been tipped to establish himself as one of the leading centres in Super League after pledging his future to Wigan.

The Kiwi – currently sidelined with a hamstring injury – has penned a four-year deal running to the end of 2019.

Shaun Wane is convinced the 24-year-old has a lot of unfulfilled potential.

And the coach reckons the new deal will allow him to continue his progress.

He said: “When Gells is on, he’s on – one of the best centres in Super League.

“He’s a great athlete, he’s hard to handle, strong, and has great skill as well.

He’s definitely a different sort of character, and he can be a test sometimes! But he’s a really nice person who fits in well here

Shaun Wane

“But I’m 100 per cent convinced there is a lot more to come from him.

“If you look at his concentration level, I want to see 10, 15, 20 games when he consistently performs at a high level – and he knows that.

“On his day, he’s a real handful.”

Wane signed Gelling from the relative-obscurity of the Auckland Vulcans at the end of 2011 – the Cook Islands international was working a full-time construction job at the time – after a recommendation from his former team-mate, Kevin Iro.

He showed flashes of promise in his first two years, without cementing a regular spot.

But their combined patience and persistence paid off, with Gelling flourishing last season and continuing that form this year in the right-centre berth. He is also one of the most colourful characters at the club – he charged down a penalty-attempt against Brisbane in February, and arrived at the Good Friday derby riding a BMX bike!

Wane said: “He’s definitely a different sort of character, and he can be a test sometimes! But he’s a really nice person who fits in well here.”

Gelling is due back from injury in around three weeks.

Wigan favour long-term deals, having already signed Tony Clubb and Dom Manfredi to improved contracts this year. Wane, meanwhile, formally ruled Wigan out of the running for Salford want-a-way halfback Theo Fages.