Wigan Warriors announce Championship link-up

Wigan Warriors have announce a dual-registration partnership with Newcastle Thunder for the 2022 season.

Monday, 6th December 2021, 4:02 pm
Wigan Warriors' HQ at Robin Park

The link with the Championship club will offer some of Wigan’s young and upcoming talent the opportunity to gain valuable and regular first-team experience and play competitive rugby league to help with their development.

The arrangement between the two clubs will see Wigan players continue to be registered to the Warriors but also registered to play for Newcastle.

When a Wigan player goes on dual-registration to Newcastle, that player will be eligible to play and train with both clubs.

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The player is restricted to play in one fixture per scheduled round of fixtures in any given week and would not be eligible to play twice for Newcastle and Wigan during the same weekend.

Dual-registration was first brought into the game in 2013 and Wigan have had previous partnerships with Swinton Lions and London Skolars.

With a number of previous Wigan players currently at Newcastle, as well as former Wigan players Eamon O’Carroll in the role as head coach and Denis Betts as director of rugby, the Warriors have strong links with the Thunder.

The announcement comes off the back of the confirmation that Wigan and Newcastle will play in a pre-season friendly in January at Kingston Park.

Talking about the partnership, Warriors head coach Matty Peet said: “We’ve got a good relationship with Thunder, so they’ll be our partner club this year.

“The pre-season game is part of that as well as us sharing ideas with Denis and Eamon about best practice, they will take things from here but also we’ll learn from them.

“I’m sure you’ll see a few of our players playing for Newcastle this year as players like Sam Halsall did last year.

“The way Sam was looked after, it proved to us that Newcastle was a strong club, a caring club and one we want to do more with going forward.”

O’Carroll is equally pleased with the partnership.

He said: “Certainly for us the quality of players that we may be able to bring in from Wigan, I saw that today from people who have just joined the first team, they’re learning every day and they’re around good players.

“From our point of view, we offer the opportunity for the players to still remain in a full-time environment and also the opportunity for them to get out of this environment with some exposure to a different setting.”

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