Shaun Wane hopes RU legend Will Greenwood’s big-game experience rubs off on his players this weekend.
The Warriors boss invited the 55-cap England veteran into training to speak to his squad ahead of Saturday’s Challenge Cup quarter-final with Castleford.
He trained with the lads and spoke about his career and what he’s done, so it was a nice reminder for the players about big occasions.”Shaun Wane
Wane said: “He gave us some good information about what he went through.
“He sent me a message after one game last year so we stayed in touch, he’s a massive Wigan fan and a massive league fan.
“He trained with the lads and spoke about his career and what he’s done, so it was a nice reminder for the players about big occasions.”
Welshman Ben Flower was delighted to use the chance to grab a picture with the ex-British Lions centre. And his good fortune continued after last night’s appeal against a one-match suspension was successful.
The 28-year-old had been punished the previous night by the RFL disciplinary for a dangerous throw in the 7-0 win at Widnes.
On appeal the charge was reduced to Grade A, leaving the prop with a £300 fine but clearing him to play this weekend.
The news was a huge boost, particularly given Wane’s stockpile in the front-row has been reduced recently.
Tony Clubb is sidelined following neck surgery and Willie Isa and Ryan Sutton have been covering in the second-row, for Liam Farrell (injury) and John Bateman (club-imposed suspension) respectively.
Prop Dom Crosby is also a doubt for Saturday’s match after Wane revealed he finished the match at Widnes despite dislocating his elbow.
“It’s not as bad as it sounds,” said Wane. “When your adrenaline is pumping it’s just a sore elbow.”
On the plus side, Sean O’Loughlin and Joel Tomkins return from lay-offs, and the latter will continue with a role in the middle as he nurses a knee problem which is restricting his movement.
Sam Tomkins and George Williams return to add some sparkle, and fit-again Dan Sarginson is a straight-swap for centre Anthony Gelling, who is facing six weeks out with a recurrence of a pectoral injury.
Souths were expected to confirm overnight the capture of Joe Burgess until the end of the season.
The winger – returning to Wigan next season – has figured just four times for Sydney Roosters.
He will be coached by ex-Warriors boss Michael Maguire at the Rabbitohs.
“Madge (Maguire) needed a winger, he phoned us and asked me my opinion on Joe and he needed some game-time, so it’s win-win,” said Wane, Maguire’s former assistant.
“I know he’ll be looked after by Madge in a good system. Souths are a little bit under the pump so that means Joe will be under the pump a bit, so it’ll be good for him.”
Ex-Wigan player Ian Gildart, dad of current centre Oliver, as well as ex-Castleford favourite Bob Beardmore will make the Challenge Cup semi-final draw on Saturday.