Joe Burgess is aiming for big finish from Wigan Warriors
Joe Burgess hopes to finish off as Wigan’s Grand Final hopes grow – after overcoming his ‘jinx.’
And the Warriors winger admits being ‘second class’ is on their mind – which is a damn sight better than they were three months ago!
Burgess bagged his 100th try for his hometown club in the win over Hull KR and is set to recover from the problem that kept him out of the win over Warrington in time for the trip to Wakefield.
But whatever you do, do not call him a veteran.
At the age of 24 he insists he is just coming into his prime, even though he is a few years older than some of the ‘kids’ that have helped turn their season around.
Now he has achieved the feat, he is determined to add a few more tries as Adrian Lam’s side looks ever more likely to make Old Trafford, especially now his ‘curse’ is broken.
Burgess said: “I’m pretty proud of my achievement to reach 100 tries in 110 games but I felt like I was jinxed a bit because I’ve hadn’t scored a try for about three or four weeks.
“A few weeks ago it was all about third spot but now after recent wins, it’s helped us climb the table to close on the second spot.”
Whisper it but Wigan are putting themselves in the frame to reach the Grand Final after a stuttering start under Lam.
But Burgess feels the performance in the 36-18 win over Rovers, even though they won, can prove a kick up the backside they needed as history may repeat itself.
He added: “Confidence is pretty high at the moment, maybe not so much after the Hull KR game because even though we won I still feel as though we took a backwards step.
“And I don’t think there is a secret to the turnaround. When a new coach comes in, it can’t just be expected to click straight away.
“However, every year it does feel like the same thing happens, a bit of a dodgy start and then we start performing towards the business-end of the season.”
Warriors do not have a match this weekend as St Helens and Warrington battle it out in tomorrow’s Challenge Cup final.
But any thoughts that this was a week off were quickly dispelled as the players returned to training – the serious business of defending their Super League crown is very much on the agenda.
Back-rower Willie Isa said: “We need to make sure we concentrate during these sessions, this is not really a week off, it is a chance to prepare ourselves for next week.
“We are focused for the Wakefield game as it will set us up for the weeks after, it is just about making sure we know what we are doing.
“The most important thing is staying focused and getting the boys together for intense training, you can easily just chill, but the coaches have us working hard.”