Burgess: Rip in and make it one to remember

Wigan Warriors Joe Burgess (right) skips away from a tackle by Huddersfield Giants Ukuma Ta'ai
Wigan Warriors Joe Burgess (right) skips away from a tackle by Huddersfield Giants Ukuma Ta'ai

JOE Burgess has vowed to make his final Good Friday derby “for a few years” one to remember.

The winger – destined for Sydney Roosters at the end of this season – has roared back into good form.

Last year was my first game against Saints and I really enjoyed it – and I imagine this’ll be even better at our place in front of a sell-out crowd

Joe Burgess

And the 20-year-old is hoping he can help create another golden memory with a victory against St Helens today.

“This is a big one for me,” he said.

“It’s my last Good Friday derby for a few years, and so I really want to rip in and make it one to remember.

“Last year was my first game against Saints and I really enjoyed it – and I imagine this’ll be even better at our place in front of a sell-out crowd.”

Burgess made a try-scoring debut against Saints at this stage last year, as Warriors registered their fifth straight Good Friday triumph.

The academy-product watched many of those victories from the stands, and still pinches himself that he is now out on the pitch himself.

“I was there as a fan four years ago when Faz (Liam Farrell) scored the match-winner,” he said.

“To get the chance to play in this at the DW – it’s a young boy’s dream.”

Burgess dominated the media build-up to the new season after his move to the NRL was confirmed.

He had a rocky start to the campaign. He scored a memorable long-range try against Brisbane to send the World Club Series game into golden-point, but his early performances were littered with errors and he was dropped for the round four game at Castleford.

Since then, he has made strides towards reclaiming the incredible form which saw him cement the left-wing role last year.

“It was a bit of a slow start,” he admits. “It was a slow start for all of us to be honest, and I’m not blaming that, because i wasn’t happy with my performances.

“It was a real shock when Shaun Wane said I was going to Workington.

“I didn’t play in the end, and then I got called back in, it made me think I really need to knuckle down.

“These last two weeks I feel like I’ve got my confidence back and hopefully I can get better and better.”

Burgess has kept a relatively low-profile since his move to the Roosters was confirmed.

“I’m glad no one has asked me about it because I’m not thinking about it,” he added.

“I’ve got a job to do this year, and that’s what I’m focusing on.”