MICHAEL Maguire has saluted Darrell Goulding’s bravery as he prepares to re-enter the battle for a first-team spot.
The winger has been ruled out of the last three games with an ankle injury.
He suffered the problem against Castleford in the midweek Super League game on July 6.
And Maguire admits he was staggered that Goulding managed to make it through the game once he has assessed the damage.
He said: “If you’d seen his ankle after the game, you wouldn’t have thought he could have played on.
“His ankle had really swelled, it was bruised, it really was remarkable that he stayed out there and he showed just what playing for Wigan means to him.
“We’d lost a couple of players and he showed how tough he is.
“He did incredibly well just to stay on the field.”
Goulding is now aiming to squeeze back into Maguire’s plans after recovering from the injury, and adding to the century of appearances he has amassed for his home-town club.
The 23-year-old – who debuted back in 2005 – made the wing spot his own last season with a staggering 29 tries during the Super League campaign.
His predatory instincts earned him England honours in the Four Nations last year, and he was handed the No.2 shirt at the start of this season.
But since April he has struggled to nail down a regular place, with Maguire frequently preferring Josh Charnley on the right flank.
Goulding has figured just four times in more than three months yet Maguire reckons he could play a big role for the side during the business end of the season.
He added: “Darrell did a fantastic job for us last year and I know he’s not had as many opportunities this season but that’s down to the competition in the side, and he’s working extremely hard for another chance.
“I know what Darrell is capable of and I also know there’s more to come from him, and he knows that as well and he’s working extremely hard to achieve that.”
WARRIORS’ round 24 fixture against Salford City Reds at the DW Stadium, originally scheduled for Friday, August 12, has been changed to Sunday, August 14, (3pm ko) following consultation between the two clubs and the RFL.
Chairman Ian Lenagan said: “Since Wigan Athletic are scheduled to play their first home Premier League game of the season on the Saturday, we have agreed to move our fixture to the Sunday. We are sorry for any inconvenience this late change may bring to the fans.”
WIGAN have released second row Daniel Bridge, 18, who expressed a desire to join his brother Chris at Warrington. The Wolves have agreed to compensate Wigan according to the RFL guidelines.”