O’Loughlin lands club’s top award

Sean O'Loughlin
Sean O'Loughlin

CAPTAIN Sean O’Loughlin was last night named the club’s Player of the Year – just hours before he leads England Down Under for the Four Nations.

The 31-year-old took home the Warriors’ main prize at a DW Stadium dinner, providing a crumb of comfort following Saturday’s Grand Final loss against St Helens.

He was voted their best player after a poll of players, coaches, fans, sponsors and key stakeholders for his outstanding contributions.

O’Loughlin was the stand-out candidate for the award.

He guided Wigan to a Grand Final, was appointed England captain and was the team’s best player in their World Club Challenge loss in Sydney.

But there were also honours for Matty Smith, Joe Burgess, Dan Sarginson and Anthony Gelling.

Scrum-half Smith won the Coaches’ Player of the Year Award for his form which earned him an international call-up for the Four Nations.

And two other England newcomers were honoured.

Winger Joe Burgess, who turns 20 today, picked up the Young Player of the Year Award.

He crossed for 25 tries in 27 appearances.

And Dan Sarginson scooped the Try of the Year Award for his effort against St Helens on Good Friday, from O’Loughlin’s looping pass.

Elsewhere, Anthony Gelling picked up the Community Award whilst Jamie Doran (Under 19s Player of the Year) and Max Dudley (Under 16s Player of the Year) were also winners.

Wigan’s seven England stars fly Down Under today with the rest of the Super League-based players to prepare for the Four Nations.

Josh Charnley, Liam Farrell and Joel Tomkins are also in the squad, as well as head of performance Mark Bitcon and assistant coach Paul Deacon.

Rugby manager and Warriors great Kris Radlinski has accepted a place on the club’s board of directors, chairman Ian Lenagan announced last night.

FOUR Wigan players have been named in England’s 20-man academy squad for a two Test series against the Australian High Schools.

Oliver Gildart, Nick Gregson, Jake Shorrocks and Luke Waterworth are in line to clash with the tourists on December 6 and 12 at Leigh Sports Village. The Australian team will also face Wigan’s academy on November 29.

Meanwhile, fans are waiting to discover when Wigan will face Brisbane Broncos in the World Club Series.

The game has been scheduled for Saturday February 21 but Latics host Charlton that afternoon. And the Championship outfit can’t put their game back a day, as they are in action the following Tuesday.

One possible solution would be for either Latics or Warriors to move their fixture forward a day to the Friday night. But for Wigan to do so, it would require the televised WCS running order to be switched as Warrington face St George Illawarra on Feb 20.