Wigan coach Shaun Wane has drafted in club legend Andy Gregory to speak to his players ahead of Sunday’s Challenge Cup semi-final with Salford – after his Red Devils counterpart Ian Watson admitted he had also been approached by Gregory to speak with his players!
Gregory won five Challenge Cups during his time as a player with Wigan, before later coaching Salford to victory against the Warriors in the quarter-finals of the competition in 1996.
And Wane, speaking on Tuesday before Watson in the sides’ media previews, said Gregory will be a useful addition to his preparation for the game.
He said: “He’s really keen to come in and talk, as am I. There’s nobody who’s got a record like he has; he’s a Wigan-born lad brought up in Ince, he’s my mate and he’s really competitive.
“He’ll be a great speaker for the players to understand how much it means to a player to get this club to Wembley and what we need to do. It has to be a win at all costs, life or death thing to get there. It’ll be a good message. We’re going to leave that (1996) out, he’s not going to bother with that one!”
“He’s going to speak for about 5-10 minutes – he’d like an hour! – before we get into our video. It’s going to be a good day. I’ve been on that field with Greg when we beat Halifax and we had a coach journey back from London which I can’t really remember.
“They’re fantastic memories and I want him to tell everyone about those memories because there’s no better feeling.”
But Watson later joked that Gregory had not only offered to speak to the Salford players too, but said he would like the Red Devils to win the game!
Watson laughed when asked if he would use Gregory given his Salford connections: “It’s funny you should say that, because Greg wanted to come here himself and speak to the boys. He’s probably trying to get in both camps, Greg! He was telling us he’d love nothing more than to see Salford beat Wigan!
“I speak with him a bit and it’ll be interesting to see if he goes into speak with them. We’ll look at that – if he goes in at Wigan first he ain’t coming here though!”