French showing steely determination

Bevan French admits he’s not interested in the hype surrounding him as an early contender for the Man of Steel award – before admitting he’s inspired by the exploits of a former Wigan fullback.

French’s strong start to the season continued on Thursday, as he scored twice and again won the man of the match award as Wigan defeated Toronto 32-10.

Many have already identified French as a potential winner of the Man of Steel: but he has played down that talk, saying: “Individually, I set the standard pretty high for myself.

“But I don’t really focus on the awards. If you are looking further down the line with these awards, it can put a dent in your team and make you a bit selfish. The main goal is a trophy at the end of the year. Whatever comes off the back of that comes.”

French also admitted that former Warriors favourite Matty Bowen is one of the players he has modelled himself on, as he continues to excel at fullback while Zak Hardaker is playing in the centre position.

“If you look at all the greats, these sort of players pop up at the right time in the right position. Their assists and tries have been through the roof.

“Matty was one player I related to most. He wasn’t the biggest but he was quick off the mark. Billy Slater is the greatest of all time so obviously you try and take out what he has done.

“But it doesn’t just come down to one player, you cherry pick everyone.”

And despite winning two of their first three games, French stressed Wigan are by no means the finished article yet.

He said: “There is still a lot to improve on. We can’t be happy with that performance if we are to go all the way.

“We are not far off where we want to be but in the first 15 minutes of the second half we lacked discipline again. There were a couple of penalties we could have avoided.

“Once we get those under control we can move forward. The goal is to get an 80 minutes game out or as near to 80 minutes as possible. We need to do that consistently.”