Blake Green recalls Pat Richards' most 'bizarre' moment at DW Stadium!

Most Warriors fans would agree Pat Richards' finest moments in the DW Stadium were with a rugby league ball - but Blake Green can tell you otherwise.

Wednesday, 9th June 2021, 11:52 am
Pat Richards on the pitch at the DW Stadium the day after winning the 2013 Challenge Cup, with Latics chairman Dave Whelan, FA Cup hero Ben Watson and Sam Tomkins

The Australian stand-off, who recently hung up his boots, this week reflected on his snaking career which included two years alongside Richards at Wigan

They won the Challenge Cup in 2013, and on the homecoming trip they detoured to the DW Stadium to show off the silverware at half-time during a Wigan Athletic match.

Green took up the story: "We were on the bus back to Wigan, we had a heap of drinks, and about an hour out the coach stands up and says, 'We're going to go on the field at the DW at half-time'.

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"So we get out on the field and the crowd were really nice and clapping - there's a bit of rivalry in Wigan between rugby league and the soccer side - but everyone was clapping really nice.

"And all the guys on the bench for Wigan Athletic are out warming up, kicking the ball around.

"There's a bloke out there practicing free kicks, and Paddy Richards runs over and just strikes one, and it just goes (arrowing with his finger) straight into the top right. The crowd erupts. It was one of the funniest, most bizarre times.

"He just whacked it, top right. It was such a good strike."

Green and Pat Richards celebrate 2013 Grand Final success

Green was speaking on the Bloke in a Bar podcast, and during the 90-minute interview he spoke fondly of his two years at Wigan.

He signed while playing at Hull KR, in unusual circumstances.

"I got an inbox on Twitter from a radio station and the guy says Kris Radlinski, the CEO of Wigan, has asked for my number," he said. "I thought it was a joke. But I sent it on and he called me up, and he asked if I wanted to play for Wigan. I was under contract and he said, 'Don't worry about that'. Before I know it, I was sold."

Weeks after lifting the Challenge Cup, Green went on to win the man of the match in the 2013 Grand Final win - when he played on with a broken eye socket.

"It was at Old Trafford and they literally sang the whole time. Walking out on the field, I'd never watched a soccer game there before, there were flames coming up and you could feel the energy in the stadium," said the 34-year-old.

"Just the energy in the stadium, I'd never felt anything like that before.

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"I was shaking big time. I thought, 'I'll have a run, get tackled' - and I got punched in the head by Ben Westwood and my eye socket is gone.

"My first thought was, 'I'm gone here'.

"Pat Richards came over and said, 'You need to hang tough and we'll win this'. We ended up hanging tough, and we came out in the second half and everything we did came off.

"The way the rules are these days, I'd have had to go off, but it was literally a fairytale."

Green left Wigan at the end of 2014 to return to the NRL with Melbourne, and later played for Manly, New Zealand Warriors and Newcastle, before deciding to retire after battling back from an injury.

"I want to stay in the game as a coach, that's the plan," he added.