Kris Radlinski explains why latest Wigan Warriors triumph is special

WIGAN chief executive Kris Radlinski says the current Warriors team will be remembered for generations to come after their Challenge Cup success on Saturday.

By beating Warrington 18-8 at Wembley on Saturday, Matt Peet’s side completed the unique feat of having all four available trophies at once, alongside the World Club Challenge, Super League title and League Leaders’ Shield.

“Matt referenced it all week – he said you’re a good team but you’ve got an opportunity to become a great team, by getting that,” said Radlinski.

“They’ve not shied away from it; it was very much a motivation. 

“Having been amongst the group all week, I started it with nerves. But when you’re with them, they’re so calm and focused that it takes all that away. I was pretty confident going into the game that we’d do it.

“I have to say, they’re a special bunch. The bond, how close they are as friends. It’s pretty amazing to see. I’ve never seen a group like it in all my career at the club.

“This team will be remembered now, for 15, 20, 25 years. This team did it, and did it in a good manner.

“We’re sitting on the Man of Steel and Lance Todd (winner Bevan French) as well. Abbas (Miski) won top try-scorer. We’ve almost got the individual awards as well, which is amazing. 

“All testament goes to Matt. He’s an impressive individual and he’s going to get better and better. We’ll support him in getting better. He’s very much part of a huge future for the club.”

Wigan have now won five pieces of silverware in Peet’s two-and-a-half years as head coach but Radlinski still says this one is special.

“There are a couple of reasons why it’s different this time. First of all Wembley – it means a lot to Matt. 

“Tottenham was amazing, but this was the one for Matt, growing up and coming to Wembley. 

“I sensed a few nerves on him this week, which is great. I knew this was important, and obviously to win four. 

“The other one is the new ownership. Mike (Danson) has never won at Wembley, so I sensed him being a bit nervous.

“He must have phoned me six or seven times every day, asking me how we’re going to cope with the fans, how is Matt and everything. It’s been an exciting week for him. 

“For me, we just continue doing it. The challenge we’ve got is to keep reinventing it, keep coming up with different ideas and not becoming stale. We’ll continue challenging each other to be better.”

First published in League Express newspaper, Issue 3,434 (June 10, 2024)

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