Wigan Warriors boss Matt Peet on why he signed Kruise Leeming and Sam Walters, more potential recruits and Sam Powell, Brad O’Neill and Tom Forber

IF you hadn’t noticed, it’s been a busy week of signings for the Wigan Warriors.

On Sunday night, the Lancashire club announced the news that Kruise Leeming has signed on a long-term deal before Sam Walters and Tiaki Chan were announced as new recruits on Monday morning.

In terms of bringing in Leeming, Walters and Chan, it’s all about the person as well as the player for Wigan head coach Matt Peet.

“Kruise is a fantastic player and he became available. You’ve got to be in the fight when certain players become available and he was one we have earmarked for a while that fits the criteria on and off the field. It will add healthy competition to the spine,” Peet said.

“Sam in recent weeks has shown what he is capable of. He is a lad we have known of for a long period of time, we discussed going for him when he first went over to Leeds but it wasn’t to be.

“He is someone we have tracked and is someone we have got at the perfect time. They are competitors and live good lives away from rugby league. They will add to the club away from the field which is very important.”

In terms of Leeming at number nine, the Warriors already have Sam Powell and Brad O’Neill whilst Cade Cust has been spelled at hooker for the past month as Tom Forber remains highly-rated at the club.

For Peet, however, it’s a case of creating competition for places.

“It adds to competition and increase the intensity to how well you have got to play to be at the club and get a starting jersey. Those lads will have extra focus and competition for places. From a coaches point of view and fans it’s perfect. They have got to perform,” Peet continued.

“We look at our pathway first and Brad (O’Neill) and Tom (Forber) are two we want to be at the club for a good while yet but we also have to recruit at the top end of the market.

“We can’t just rely on our academy, it is our lifeblood, but every strong Wigan team has had homegrown talent but also international and world class flavour as well.

“Sam (Powell) has been through a lot in his career at this club and has been a massive part of our success. He has had plenty of challenges along the way, he is tough and resilient. We are expecting him back on the field in six weeks and expecting a powerful end to the season.”

In terms of more recruits, Peet is keen to continue to add to his squad for 2024 and beyond with the Wigan boss conceding that centre could be an area to strengthen.

“I couldn’t give you a number (of signings), there are a few areas we need to strengthen which are key areas. We are going to be smart and ambitious, we will get the right people if they come available. We won’t bring people in just to fill a gap.

“I wouldn’t like to single out just one position (to strengthen) it’s not fair. There is a chance that Toby King will go back to Warrington so that’s the obvious one.”