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Everything posted by WN83

  1. Tough to say what he will be at loose forward because he still played 90%+ of his game time in that right sided second row slot this season, even though he had been given the 13 shirt. That was mainly because of injuries and Lam's fetish for young middle forwards. I think he'd go pretty well as a regular loose forward, off loading and taking on the bigger men but I can't really give a concrete opinion on him in the position yet, as he just hasn't played enough games there. The easiest way I'd sum up Batemans season was that for decent second rower, he was probably an 8/10 but by his own high standards set both down under and here before his exit, he was more like a 5 or 6/10. He still walks in to an England side though. The day we're good enough to leave out a player like Bateman, will be a very good one.
  2. Batemans dreadful form was a bit of a myth IMO. Was it his best? No. Was it better than many other superleague back rowers? Yes. He made too many errors and like everyone at Wigan, he was clearly frustrated with how things were going but he was getting criticised late in the season on the back of games where he’d made 40+ tackles and 140+ metres. If that’s not judging a man on unrealistic expectations, I don’t know what is. He needs to improve, I absolutely agree and he will but you don’t leave Bateman out of an England team. It’s like saying the England football side should be leaving Harry Kane out because he’s had a rough patch. This idea people love to push, that you should always pick ‘on form’ is nonsense. There can be hundreds of different reasons for up and down club form but you pick your best players, the players you trust and who you know can do the job for you and then mix in some form men. No international side, in any sport, is successful unless it has a core of players to build the side around.
  3. We don’t produce many with the natural ability of Will Pryce. The footwork, balance and pace of the lad are a joy to watch. You have to take the opposition in to consideration I suppose but he really does look like he could make a run at a squad place in next years World Cup.
  4. Really looking forward to watching a few of these young lads play together. I've seen all of the Wigan lads games this year and Pearce-Paul could be a very special player in time. We seem to be able to produce good forwards as a country without too much fuss though, so it's Will Pryce, Lewis Dodd and Mikey Lewis I'll be paying particular attention to. It's lads like these we really need to see get better and better.
  5. Something they won’t get enough credit for because it’s Wigan. As for the state of play for us overall, I don’t think we’ll have enough points in us to go too far in the play offs but we’re in a totally different place to where I expected us to be a few weeks back. Teams will have to earn their points against us and will need to be up for a battle.
  6. I’m not sure what Wigan did to Carney or O’Connor at the end of their Wigan careers but it must’ve been terrible going off the huge downer they have on them. I was at the game today and the first twenty mins was pretty dire but I thought it was a good, competitive game after that. We defended extremely well and Hull blinked first. Our attack is pretty shambolic, I cannot deny that but I’m confident we’ll make any game in the play offs extremely difficult for the team we play against. His description of the game was pretty embarrassing overall. Abject would be two teams who didn’t care and both clearly cared a great deal.
  7. They’ve not confirmed Wane and Peet but they have hinted massively at it when you read through the fans forum minutes. Talk of Wane having newly found business skills he didn’t have prior to his exit and how there are other roles he could come back in and a confirmation that Peet has been doing the scouting for signings from the NRL. Add in Lenagan setting the scene of him never having appointed a guy already in a head coaching position and they’ve pretty much confirmed the rumours. It all points to Peet in a role similar to Agar at Leeds, working under a director of rugby, with Wane playing the role of Sinfield. As for the Wire game, I think they have too many attacking weapons for us. I went to Cas and it was better but the attack still looked well off and it’ll be tough to keep Wire to a couple of scores (which is what we’ll probably need to do to win). Wire by 12
  8. Saints have so many qualities to admire but the play acting and wind up tactics from guys like Bentley are typical of modern day rugby league and they’re class leaders. Makinson really embarrassed himself chasing the ref asking for a red card for Lineham, after Coote went down with a style Tom Daley would’ve been proud of.
  9. Harry Smith needs to rid his game of the really basic errors he’s making on a weekly basis. Outside of those, he comes up with some amazing plays but they’re hurting him. He seems to take the ultra attacking option at every point in the game but he needs to learn to manage games and to pick his moments. If he does that he can be whatever he wants to be.
  10. It was a hand written invite for the mild mannered Ollie Partington It was soft from Buttler though and warranted somebody going in on him. It’s been a tough old season for Leigh but with one hand tied behind your back, it was always going to be so. Maybe it’ll be a fair crack of the whip next season going off the rumours flying around. I hope so because in the current climate when we need all the income we can get, games between the two clubs will help each other out.
  11. Decent enough from Wigan given how poor the attack has been and considering we probably had 6 of our first choice backline out (certainly 5 in French, Manfredi, Hardaker, Gildart and Marshall. The 6th between Field who missed the game or Leuluai who lasted 15 minutes). It was great to see Harry Smith play really well and kick really well. Leigh are dreadful mind but you can only beat what’s in front of you. Singleton and Ashworth will both cop a ban. I’d guess Partington as well but Rob Buttler should get the biggest ban for hitting Singleton from behind (with punches my old nan would be ashamed of) 3 times whilst he was being held in the melee. That’s what set Partington off.
  12. We're awful at the minute, we're so short in the front row it's not funny and we're even worse off in the coaching position but I still wouldn't rule us out completely. If we get all our players back as expected pretty soon and then have a decent trot with injuries you never know. Making ground has been an issue, as has soring points but Hardaker at full back and Field and Hastings in the halves should go a way to solving that (although it's a big 'if' when it comes to Lam picking that trio). The props haven't been brilliant recently but there's been an upturn in performance from guys like Singleton, Havard and Clark and if we can get that first choice backline out for the first time this season (well minus French), we'll have a full back 5 capable of making good ground from our end (Hardaker, Manfredi, Bibby, Gildart and Marshall) and two halfbacks capable of cutting teams up. We've also seen Pearce-Paul come in and eat up the ground and Bateman could now come in at loose forward and add to that. In short the issues with making ground and scoring points could be solved but we'll be stuck with this coach until the end of the season. The players will need to get over that as well as some decent sides to stand a chance but stranger things have happened.
  13. They’re giving tickets away for the hundred. I’ve got 6 free tickets for Manchester Originals vs Southern Brave on the 5th August. I don’t think the sales have been anything like they hoped and it will probably be running at a loss this year. It’s giving off a hugely positive vibe though and I think they’re speculating to accumulate in the years to come. Another freebie in our local area was to get a free hundred branded cricket bat and ball for the kids. It must be costing a fortune but they’re pushing the marketing hard.
  14. Covid has been a brilliant excuse for the NRL clubs to hide behind for two years now. They will continue to ride it for as long as possible. What a depressing time for rugby league.
  15. Let’s hope this is the night our attack finally clicks. We’ve been waiting all season (well in truth, we’ve been waiting since Lam came). We should have our strongest side out for a few weeks anyway, with Hastings, Powell, Isa, Bullock and Byrne all potentially up for selection. The emergence of a couple of cracking juniors in Pearce-Paul and Brad O’Neil gives Lam an opportunity to drive competition by being ruthless but I’m not holding my breath. Looking forward to it anyway. I’ve been to a couple of games since we’ve been allowed but this will be the first where you can sit freely with your mates and have a beer together.
  16. Bevan French was playing NSW cup when he signed and he’s gone pretty well. The three of them have been or still are fringe players in the NRL but that doesn’t mean they’re poor players. Wigan seem to be going down the route of signings younger overseas players, who are looking to rebuild a career or kickstart a career before potentially heading back down under with an improved reputation. I would rather we did that than go head first in to signing 34/35 year old big names, who are coming over for a pension top up. I hear positive things about Mago and Miski looks dangerous, although he may not be first choice. I don’t know a great deal about Ellis but plenty of unknowns have done very well here. The beauty of what we have at Wigan is that we won’t be solely relying on signings. Kids like KPP and Brad O’Neill highlight exactly where our strength lies. We’re in a sticky patch at the minute but all the times the youngsters are getting more experience and will continue to improve. Our biggest signing for next season won’t be made on the field.
  17. My favourite part was them saying Williams didn’t look homesick on a photo at a team function. how do you look homesick?
  18. Heart bleeds for them, it really does. Wigan put a few years and expense in to developing Harry Rushton and they got him for nowt. They should really give producing their own players a whirl, they might like it.
  19. I hope the players step it up in this game as they did last season. We can debate if our 7 wins from 7 and 1st position in the league is warranted or simply masking bigger issues but one thing is for certain, we won't win this particular game without going up a couple of gears from the last three performances. Catalans have been really impressive recently and they have the power in the middle and class on the end of that to give us a pretty torrid night if we're not right on it. The team news will be very important. We really could do with Gildart, Leuluai, Isa and Smithies back in, to offset the huge loss of French and let us get players in their natural postions and Catalans will be hoping Sam Tomkins pulls through.
  20. Good luck to the lad whatever happens. I hope he comes back to Wigan but if not then so be it. I think his decision is a brave one and one that is putting his family above his career and I can't blame him for that. I don't think he'll go short on the money front and it's not like he's coming back from working in a normal job, to then work in one here. He'll have a great lifestyle here, a great career, on fantastic money and a network of family and friends around him and his partner to offer their support. I couldn't get my head around some comments on here a few weeks ago where people were saying 'he'll regret it like I did' or 'what an opportunity he's throwing away' because everyone is different, peoples circumstances differ and people saying things like that didn't move 12,000 miles away from home and then see the world get hit with a pandemic, so it's impossible for anybody other than Williams and his partner to know exactly how it feels for them. It's been a limited spell in the NRL due to this but I think he's enhanced his reputation on the field and can walk away with his head held high.
  21. Hopefully they’ve spent their energy putting Saints away. The availability of Sam Tomkins could be a big factor but in saying that Morgue was superb at the weekend. It’s really pleasing to see a couple of French lads breaking through this season.
  22. We certainly are. These next two games will be very telling about exactly where we are. Two sides with big packs, who are flying these past few weeks. Hopefully we’ll see a performance similar to last season at Catalans. That was a real catalyst for us going on a run. In terms of errors, I do worry how squeaky clean we have to be in games due to a lack of power in the middle. If we complete really high and make it a fitness battle, we’re a shot in any game but as soon as that drops off, even slightly, we’re in trouble against the best sides and in the big games.
  23. It was above 90% prior to the Hull game. Our completions were fantastic and then it flipped in that cup game and we’ve been poor since. We weren’t doing anything with the possession mind but the errors were really low. Edit-had a quick check and in the two league games before the cup game we made 6 errors. We made 14 on Saturday and I shudder to think how many in the cup game but it had to be above 15, maybe even 20.
  24. It’s 5 drives and a kick most of the time, with the hope that Hastings or French will take over at some point in a set and produce a moment of brilliance. I think we can surely agree whatever the style of play is, it isn’t an attacking brand of rugby we’re playing? Lam has promised that consistently but never delivered it. I’ll give him his due on Powell, he’s one of a very very small group of players Lam has improved. I’m not bagging Lam for the sake of it here, he was an unbelievable player for us and I know he thinks a lot of the club but that doesn’t make him a good coach. It all feels a bit Keiron Cunningham at Saints like at the minute, minus the statue. Saints replaced him with a top coach, who dragged improvement out of 95% of his squad. I’m not knee jerk by the way. I’ve not changed my mind on Lam from part way through his first season but at least back then we could blame our shortfalls on it being early days. There’s no doubt he should be here until the end of the season but I’d replace him even if we scraped a Grand Final (and it would be a scrape). There’s some talk French is done for the season and if that’s true, I don’t think we’ll have to debate winning anything.
  25. Our ball control was exceptional up until the cup game against Hull and since that nightmare it's fallen apart. Our discipline has been dreadful all season. I noted at the game on Saturday that in all the games I watch on TV including our own, teams just seem to give away lots of repeat sets rather than penalties, whereas we're giving away plenty of both. I think a lot of that goes back to the lack of power in the middle. We're constantly seeing smaller forwards/young kids in the middle having to wrestle blokes twice their size and giving away penalties on the back of ball strips or for hands in at the ruck.
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