HARRISON Hansen insists Wigan will head into Friday’s first home match in seven weeks with their confidence boosted – not dented – by Monday’s loss.
A depleted Warriors side missing several key players led against Warrington 12-10, only to concede two late tries and slip to a 22-12 defeat.
But Hansen, who excelled in the pack, reckons the manner of their spirited display will galvanise the squad ahead of the visit of rejuvenated Castleford.
He said: “This game has spurred us on, definitely.
“With the injuries we had and the young boys in there, everyone stood up.
“On another day we could’ve beaten Warrington so we will take a lot from that game.
“We had them on their backs at different points in the game, and we probably just ran out of juice in the end, and ran out of bodies.”
Shaun Wane will ensure the players are well rested, given the four-day turnaround between fixtures.
Hansen said: “We have some sore bodies but everyone is keeping their heads up. There were stupid little things that didn’t go our way, but we’re all proud of the effort, and if we play like that again we should be okay.”
Wane will assess his squad today to see if Australian stand-off Blake Green may be fit to return.
Hooker Mike McIlorum also has a chance following knee surgery, though Wane has few other contenders to come into the squad.
One of the many positives from Monday’s loss was an eye-catching display from Anthony Gelling, who was forced to fill in at centre when Iain Thornley turned his ankle during training.
Many of the 22-year-old’s previous appearances have come on the wing, and Hansen said: “He is versatile and he’s got the size, and if he gets more game time he will get much better. He has shown the reason why Waney put the faith in him.”
Meanwhile, Warriors have sounded out Australian Anthony Minichiello as a possible replacement for Sam Tomkins.
The Sydney Roosters captain has been approached about a move in 2014.
Although 33, the former Kangaroos international has had a decorated career and could help develop youngsters such as 18-year-old Lewis Tierney.