George Williams has admitted he wants to cut short his Wigan contract and move to the NRL next season.
Warriors owner Ian Lenagan yesterday said he did not want to lose the England international, who is attracting fresh interest from Down Under including Newcastle Knights.
But Williams has given the NRL website an interview and admitted: “I definitely want to give it a go if there is a chance.
“I haven’t spoken to Newcastle but it is nice to hear that there be some interest.
“If there was an opportunity that came up, that was more than just interest, I would like to pursue that.”
Lenagan yesterday pointed out Wigan turned down a £400,000 offer for Williams last year when they signed him up to a three-year deal as a marquee player - meaning only a portion of his lucrative contract counts on the salary cap.
He has two years left to run on that contract, as well as an option in Wigan’s favour.
And given they received a “significant” fee from Canberra to release John Bateman from the final year of his contract - and previously received transfers to release Sam Tomkins and Lee Mossop to NRL clubs - it would appear unlikely they would let him go for free.
“I would have to come to an agreement with Wigan and maybe that is not what they want but it is my dream so if there is an opportunity I want to do it,” said Williams, who is set to return from a knee injury to face Castleford tonight.
Future Wigan coaches Adrian Lam and Shaun Edwards, set to attend this evening’s game at the DW Stadium, will surely be following developments closely. Lam yesterday spoke of his desire to work with Williams and possibly pair him with his son, Lachlan, at Wigan next season.
Lenagan yesterday told Wigantoday.net: “I think at least three clubs who want George but we don’t want him to go.
“And that’s why we signed him to a four-year deal a year ago.
“Put it into perspective, we turned down £400,000 from a UK club last year, which shows you how we value him.
“But the NRL are always going to chase players, and they end up getting tempted. We have to have a conversation with George but we don’t want him to go.”