Wane puts his trust in youth to fill Green role

Wigan's Blake Green
Wigan's Blake Green

SHAUN Wane has no plans to recruit a replacement for NRL-bound Blake Green.

The Australian stand-off yesterday confirmed he will leave the club at the end of the season, to link-up with Melbourne.

His exit will leave a huge void in the Warriors side for 2015.

But Wane believes they have the talent within the squad to fill the No.6 role.

And he will give academy-products Sam Powell, George Williams and Ryan Hampshire every opportunity to prove they are ready to handle the playmaker duties before Green returns from injury in two months.

The coach has looked at available stand-offs and will continue to keep an open-mind - but is comfortable with his existing options.

He said: “I’m set on the players we already have.

“I’ve looked at options and I can’t bring in anyone better - it’s a case of better the devil you know.

“We’ve got George, Sam and Rocky (Hampshire), so we’re in a good position.

“It may be a year earlier than we would have liked, but we’ll rotate it and see who goes the best.

“I expect one of them to get that starting number.”

Powell would appear the most obvious candidate, given Hampshire (full-back) and Williams (hooker) have played most of their games in other positions.

Whoever gets the nod, Wane concedes they will have big boots to fill.

“Definitely,” he said. “Blake loves Wigan, he gets what we’re about, and it’s going to be sad to lose him.

“He’s given us great service, he’s fitted well into the culture of the club.

“I always knew he had unfinished business in the NRL and we’ve had some quality from him. He’s been a great member of this team.

“It’s a win-win, we’ve had a great couple of years, it’s not finished yet, and he’ll go on to play in Melbourne. He will go back and be a success.”

Green is sidelined with a biceps injury which rules him out until mid-August.

“We’ve got a bit of time to spend with George, Sam and Rocky, to make sure they’re up to scratch,” added Wane.

“It’s time for them to step up and make sure they equip themselves better.”