Escare front-runner for kicking role
New signing Morgan Escare is shaping up as the front-runner to be Warriors' goal kicker in 2017.
The Frenchman, who arrived from Catalans Dragons last month to take-up a one-year deal, has just one Super League goal to his name, scored in 2014, but he has impressed with the boot since arriving at Wigan.
Coach Shaun Wane is yet to make his final call on someone to take over the duties vacated by Matty Smith though, and others such as stand-off George Williams are also in the frame at the moment.
“We have a few, Morgan can, George can kick,” said Wane.
“Morgan is a good kicker, and we have a few who can strike the ball.”
Despite not having a firm candidate in place for kicking duties, which were shared between Smith (83 goals), Josh Charnley (five) and Jake Shorrocks (eight) in Super League last term, Wane insists he isn’t worried about who will take up the responsibility.
“We’ll have lots of practice, lots of competition, so I don’t think anyone needs to stress about it – it’s in hand,” he said.
Meanwhile, Wane admits he might have to ‘make a tough call’ when choosing his starting 17 in 2017, as he looks forward to having more first-choice stars available.
While acknowledging an ‘outstanding’ effort to win the Super League title last term with a raft of personnel on the sidelines, the coach has made his requirements clear for Warriors’ title defence.
“I’ve had chats with all of them, the best will play. If I have to make a tough call, I will,” he said.“Those who can deliver what I want will play. I’ll work like hell with those who don’t play to try and improve them. It’s clear what I want, and the best get in. I’ll look forward to dropping some players because I didn’t have to leave many out last season.”
With a clutch of long-term absentees expected to be fit Wane is aiming squarely at more silverware.
“There are four (trophies) up for grabs next year and we’ll be going all out to have a crack at them,” he said.