Wigan interest 'came out of nowhere' admits new recruit Kruise Leeming as he details Matt Peet's persuasive first call
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He reported to his first pre-season training at Robin Park last week and arrives with 170 games worth of Super League experience across stints with Huddersfield and the Rhinos.
And the England international admits Wigan’s interest came out of the blue, later signing a four-year deal.
He said: “I was in Australia and talking to a few clubs and then Wigan approached me.
“It came out of nowhere for me, and I think it came out of nowhere for the club as well.
“I don’t think I was on their radar and to be honest they weren’t on mine, but then me and Matty Peet had a zoom call and that call was supposed to last 15 minutes and it ended up being an hour.
“Just the way he is as a bloke, how straightforward he is, his morals, his beliefs.
“His ambitions were a big thing for me and the ambitions he has for the club.
“It might come as a surprise to some people that one phone call was enough, but it was. I challenge them to have a call with Matty Peet.
“The way he does things at Wigan really suited what I believe to be a high-performance environment, so that was a massive factor for me.
“The way he is as a person and how highly all the lads speak of him as well.
“It’s a tough thing to get right as a coach, I don’t think many do and that doesn’t make you a bad coach, but to please 30 or 40 men is a tough thing - and great leaders do that.
“I’ve only known him for a short time but it’s been good so far.”
Leeming made 12 appearances down under for the Titans and admits he ‘fulfilled a childhood dream’ having left his comfort zone.
“I went over and didn’t know anyone,” he said.
"I learnt a lot. I don’t want to say the normal cliché about going over there and finding myself, it wasn’t like that.
“If you asked me before I went, I’d have said I was pretty mature anyway, I have my own house, I live on my own for example.
“But just getting dropped somewhere with no connections and no comfort zone. You learn a lot by being out of your comfort zone.
“The rugby side of it, I felt like I learned how good the Super League is. The game over there is fantastic and it suited me.
“But I think we’re not as far off as we think. It was like playing against the top teams every week, that was probably the difference. The intensity is every week.
“I got the chance to play against the best teams, the Broncos, Penriths, Melbournes.
“I fulfilled a childhood dream and I wouldn’t have changed anything that happened over there.”