- Wigan Head Coach previews Thursday’s game against Wakefield
- Highlights dangers of unpredictable Trinity
- Updates on squad injuries and players likely to feature
Wigan Warriors Head Coach Shaun Wane says the squad are “expecting the unexpected” ahead of Thursday’s Betfred Super League Super 8s clash with Wakefield Trinity.
His side face the sixth place Trinity in the fourth round of the Super 8s and make it clear that they are a side with plenty of threats.
“They’ve butchered us a few times. They are a team that can play well on their day as we have found out many times.”
He pointed out that their physicality can pose a problem for any Super League team. “They are a far bigger team than us but we just need to have the same sort of reaction that we had in the Saints game.”
But it’s not just their physicality that the Head Coach was keen to highlight. After an eye-catching performance vs Huddersfield Giants last week, he said “The way they started against Huddersfield last week shows they are playing with a bit of free spirits. We are expecting the unexpected.”
“I know they have a lot of players in their team that can play. It’s a different mental challenge this game in crowd and atmosphere and that’s where our mentality needs to be really, really strong.”
There was also time to discuss last week’s derby win over St Helens. He explained, “Hopefully we will get the chance to play them again. But for my last game at St Helens it was great. It was a great performance.”
“It was emotional and it meant a lot to everybody. There was a chance they could lift the league leaders trophy and non of us wanted to sit through that.”
On the late inclusion of Morgan Escare at full back in place of the injured Sam Tomkins, he said, “We do change in how we play with Morgan so losing Sam [Tomkins] last minute was quite disruptive to our attack. But you wouldn’t have thought that watching us on the night.”
Return of Dom Manfredi
With winger Dom Manfredi named in the 19-man squad for Thursday’s fixture, plenty of excitement has begun to whip up around the return to action of a player who has spent two years on the sidelines.
Wane said, ““He’s been in some tough places. He’s a great kid and he’s done some fantastic things for us. Credit to him, he’s turned up with a great attitude and now he’s fit and healthy.”
“I will make my decision on Dom on pure performance and doing the right thing in future games. If I feel it right to play Dom I will, and if I don’t I won’t.”
On Dan Sarginson
Over the weekend the terrible news emerged that Wigan centre Dan Sarginson had lost his 23-year-old brother.
Talking about Dan and dealing with the news, Shaun said - “It’s been a difficult week for us all, especially Dan. He’s come straight back into training and trained really well today. Mentally he’s in a very tough place but I’ve been through it myself what he’s going through and I couldn’t wait to get back into work and into games and I think that he’s of a similar opinion.
“The lads are good with him, they are a very caring bunch and he means a lot to them. It’s very, very sad what’s happened but it’s a bit more motivation for us as well.”
“I spoke to him today and I’ll speak to him tomorrow. It really doesn’t matter to me, it’s just whatever he want’s to do, and he’s leaning towards wanting to play.”