Wane on ‘feud’ with Brown

Nathan Brown, Paul Wellens, Sean O'Loughlin and Shaun Wane at the press conference held for the Super League Grand Final 2014

Nathan Brown, Paul Wellens, Sean O'Loughlin and Shaun Wane at the press conference held for the Super League Grand Final 2014

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SHAUN Wane insists there are no lingering feelings of anomosity towards Nathan Brown from their run-in during the summer.

Wigan and St Helens haven’t clashed since a public fall-out following Saints’ 16-12 victory at the DW in June.

Brown sparked the row, accusing his counterpart of pressuring officials in a stunning outburst.

“Phil Bentham had an absolutely shocking performance,” said Brown. “Waney’s been whinging for the last two months, and then we cop it up the backside.”

Wane was informed of the comments minutes later.

“Is that what he said?” replied the Warriors coach.

“Absolute disgrace. Absolute garbage, that’s all I want to say. Absolute garbage.”

But it wasn’t all he said.

Without prompting, he continued: “Nathan Brown shouldn’t be allowed to say stuff like that. He came out with garbage before we went to Sydney about headhunters, and he got away with it. It’s just disgraceful that he comes out with things like that. I’m fuming.”

After a pre-season game, Brown reacted to a high challenge by Ben Flower on Luke Walsh as “standard with their front-rowers.”

As they prepare for Saturday’s showdown at Old Trafford, Wane insists there is no problem between the pair.

He put their past run-ins down their passion for their respective clubs.

“He’s bought into what it means being here,” said Wane.

“I’m very passionate about Wigan and he’s passionate about St Helens... sometimes it seeps over and things are said.

“I have my opinion, he has his, we move on.

“But there’s nothing personal about it.

“As a person, I like him.”

Coincidentally, Bentham has again got the nod to take charge of the Old Trafford showdown.

Wane was left puzzled by some of the referee’s decisions in Wigan’s semi-final triumph against Warrington.

But he didn’t want to make an issue of the fact the Leigh official will again be in charge.

“There were some strange decision on Friday. Decisions I just couldn’t fathom,” he said.

“But it is what it is. I’ll just have to deal with it.”

Wane, though, repeated his stance that he would not use a referee as an excuse for a defeat.

“If I feel like my players are hard done by I’ll stick up for them,” he said. “But when we come to look at games, I don’t ever blame the referee.

“In the video room, you never see me using a referee as an excuse. We look at what we can do better.