SHAUN Wane says he had no inkling Sam Tomkins was about to announce his return to Super League in 2016, but knows why he is feeling homesick.
The 26-year-old England fullback revealed yesterday he will be signing for a Super League club ‘in the next few days’ but would not reveal his destination.
I’m not surprised but I know he likes it here and his family’s here – he was never going to settle anywhere else, he always loved living in this townShaun Wane
Warriors fans will be hoping a comment made by Tomkins – that he misses the pies – is a hint he will be in Cherry and White next term.
“Wigan’s a great town – everyone gets homesick leaving Wigan,” said Wane.
“I’m not surprised but I know he likes it here and his family’s here – he was never going to settle anywhere else, he always loved living in this town.”
But the Wigan coach admitted news of Tomkins’ decision to leave the NRL came as a surprise.
“I don’t know the reasons he’s leaving,” said Wane.
“When I spoke to him a few weeks ago he seemed pretty happy but now he’s chosen to do that.”
“I spoke to him a few weeks ago about his injury and he was a bit down about that so I don’t know what’s happened.”
Wigan have first refusal on Tomkins’ signature, thanks to a clause in his contract from when he left the DW Stadium in 2013, and while Wane remained tight-lipped on what stage negotiations are up to with the star, he did admit it would be a boost for Warriors fans to see him back.
“He’s a great player and one of the best in the world - there’s no doubt about that,” he said.
“Any club would want to go for Sam.”
But negotiations won’t take long according to Tomkins, who revealed a deal with a Super League club would be done, ‘in the next few days’.
“It’s not 100 per cent yet – I’ve not signed anything yet,” said Tomkins.
“I’m definitely going to be in Super League but I can’t say exactly where I’ll be as I’ve not put pen to paper.
“It’s one of those – I can’t say anything until I do sign somewhere.”
Tomkins is expected to follow older brother Joel, who returned to Wigan early from a stint in rugby union, and if he does end up back at Wigan, will also be reunited with younger brother Logan.
“Wigan is a club that’s very close to me and my family but I understand that they are not the only club in Super League,” Tomkins said.
“Wherever I am, I don’t think the announcement will take too long. Hopefully it’ll be out the way not only for me but for people asking questions. They are asking me and I can’t give them an answer yet.”
Although he can’t give an answer, perhaps the biggest hint Wigan is first on his list lies in one of the things he misses most about home.
“Probably the pies,” he joked.
“I’ll get myself to Wigan and get myself a pie as soon as I get back.”