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Re: Project Players - Yay or Nay?
Post Thu May 10, 2018 5:43 am
Posted by hatty on Thu May 10, 2018 5:43 am
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NickyKiss wrote:
Fully agree. It’s been frustrating to see teams like Saints, Wire and Leeds have success with guys like Walmsley, Hill and Hardaker whilst we never seem to look that way. There doesn’t seem a better time to be looking at the Championship either because the league is stronger then it’s ever been and lads like Bullock have been impressing against full time professionals with very good pedigree at higher levels.

Hill was at Wigan until he was 16 and then the club let him go along with Stef Ratchford, both deemed not good enough by dean Bell and ironically Shaun Wane.
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Re: Project Players - Yay or Nay?
Post Thu May 10, 2018 6:36 am
Posted by NickyKiss on Thu May 10, 2018 6:36 am
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hatty wrote:
Hill was at Wigan until he was 16 and then the club let him go along with Stef Ratchford, both deemed not good enough by dean Bell and ironically Shaun Wane.


Hill clearly seems to be a late bloomer and maybe this lad from Barrow can be the same. I saw a picture of him from his Wigan days online when he was a winger. He was like a pipe cleaner and he must now weigh about three times as much.
Re: Project Players - Yay or Nay?
Post Thu May 10, 2018 9:03 am
Posted by Rogues Gallery on Thu May 10, 2018 9:03 am
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hatty wrote:
Hill was at Wigan until he was 16 and then the club let him go along with Stef Ratchford, both deemed not good enough by dean Bell and ironically Shaun Wane.


So was Tommy Makinson, but I don't think that was Wanes call, Brian Foley?
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Re: Project Players - Yay or Nay?
Post Thu May 10, 2018 9:13 am
Posted by 100% Warrior on Thu May 10, 2018 9:13 am
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DaveO wrote:
I'll give you FPN though I suspect many had never heard of him before he signed. As to the general point I am not suggesting we max out the overseas quota for the sake of it as many clubs did in the past but given IL was one pf the main proponents of the marquee rule that we actually make use of it assuming Sam T is off and we have a slot available. Sport is supposed to be entertaining and I'd like to see a signing that didn't give the impression the club's motivation was always cost first.

It may be cost effective to bring in developing players but it's basically boring if this a repeated time after time. I also wonder what the motivation is to bring in developing players when we supposedly have the best production line going. They just get in the way of the home grown talent and you still don't know how they will turn out. I don't put this potential signing from Barrow in that bracket and as someone else said this seems like a Neil Cowie type of recruit.


You bring up a very interesting point there in your second paragraph re why we’re bringing in developmental players when our production line is supposedly the cream of the crop, it almost contradicts that statement altogether. With two developmental props in our ranks currently, bearing in mind Navarrete looks to be ‘graduating’ soon; are we saying our academy props aren’t up to scratch?

As for your first point again I’m inclined to agree. Fans want to see big name signings who then kick on for the club but it falls back to the fact that the approach we’re taking now is working. Would IL/SW want to change a winning formula? Even so I think SW would be far too stubborn to change the approach. On the flip side using Walmsley as an example, if Bullock turns out to be as good as AW; would we complain at another developmental signing? Probably not.

There’s pro’s and cons to either way and for me I’d like to see a balanced approach whereby we are in for and signing big names but we’re keeping a keen eye on the future whether that be the academy (my preference) or developmental signings.
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Re: Project Players - Yay or Nay?
Post Thu May 10, 2018 9:32 am
Posted by Rogues Gallery on Thu May 10, 2018 9:32 am
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We have four or five excellent props in the academy. Byrne, Partington, Kibula, Barnes, Kilner, Havard. Also Jack Wells who sadly has missed all the season so far.
However they are very young, hopefully the reserve league gets fully implemented next year to allow them do develop further.

On that point the reserves are at home tonight v Bradford Bulls at Robin Park, kick off is at 6 p.m. Bradford beat them earlier in the season.
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Re: Project Players - Yay or Nay?
Post Thu May 10, 2018 1:17 pm
Posted by DaveO on Thu May 10, 2018 1:17 pm
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100% Warrior wrote:
You bring up a very interesting point there in your second paragraph re why we’re bringing in developmental players when our production line is supposedly the cream of the crop, it almost contradicts that statement altogether. With two developmental props in our ranks currently, bearing in mind Navarrete looks to be ‘graduating’ soon; are we saying our academy props aren’t up to scratch?


To a certain extent Wigan (as are all clubs) are stuck between a rock and hard place because as I said before without a decent reserve grade it's very hard to get a young prop up to speed for SL. So buying in one a bit more physically mature may seem to be the answer but then if you do that, why even bother with the production line in the first place?

Long term the answer is for IL and other more enlightened chairmen (which means NOT G Hetherington) to keep pushing for a proper reserve grade to be established. In the meantime the club will just have to recruit such players on a "needs must" basis.

As for your first point again I’m inclined to agree. Fans want to see big name signings who then kick on for the club but it falls back to the fact that the approach we’re taking now is working. Would IL/SW want to change a winning formula? Even so I think SW would be far too stubborn to change the approach. On the flip side using Walmsley as an example, if Bullock turns out to be as good as AW; would we complain at another developmental signing? Probably not.

There’s pro’s and cons to either way and for me I’d like to see a balanced approach whereby we are in for and signing big names but we’re keeping a keen eye on the future whether that be the academy (my preference) or developmental signings.


I also want to see a balanced approach. I can see sense in this signing despite the fact it potentially blocks the progress of academy players but when the club does recruit from outside it also needs to make use of the marquee slots it was very much in favour of (or just even offer a decent wedge) so it can attract some top players. I don't think anyone will have much of a problem with this signing in isolation but if as rumoured Bateman, Gildart, Sitton and Sam T are all off and it's this sort of player we recruit without going after equally good or better replacements for those leaving I think it then becomes an issue. Not just because some will want to see a star player just for the sake of it but I think the club would be gambling on being able to keep the standard up. I don't think the winning formula would continue unless the standard of SL plummets even further but even if that is what happened it would mean Wigan were, by accepting players who were just "good enough" for the competition around them, were contributing to its decline.

This player could be an AW MkII or he could be a flop and that is true for any young or lower league player untried at SL level so I don't think the club can put all its recruitment in that direction while also hoping the home grown players will fill in the gaps.
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Re: Project Players - Yay or Nay?
Post Thu May 10, 2018 3:51 pm
Posted by Geoff on Thu May 10, 2018 3:51 pm
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DaveO wrote:

Long term the answer is for IL and other more enlightened chairmen (which means NOT G Hetherington) to keep pushing for a proper reserve grade to be established.


But it's basically the chairmen's decision whether or not to run a reserve team, which means apart from ourselves and Wakefield, none of them are sufficiently enlightened.

To me, it's the RFL's responsibility to "enlighten" them, whether that be with financial incentives or some other way. Sadly, we also lack a responsible RFL at present.

It was one part of the old franchise system that worked, IMO, whereby points were gained from having a proper reserve/academy structure.
Re: Project Players - Yay or Nay?
Post Fri May 11, 2018 2:30 am
Posted by CobraCraig on Fri May 11, 2018 2:30 am
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Is Bullock a project signing? Yes he’s stepping up a level but that’s about it. Yes we probably think we can improve him as a player and rightly so but he’s a 25 year old prop who will be coming to play prop,he’s not a union novice or Ozzie kid who couldn’t get a gig the NRL.

On another note,has anyone seen enough of him to make a judgement?I think everytime I see a prop come from the lower level I think of Hill and Walmsley but for those 2 there are plenty of failures,including Hopkins who came with a big rep from Leigh fans and never got a look in.
Re: Project Players - Yay or Nay?
Post Fri May 11, 2018 9:06 am
Posted by Rogues Gallery on Fri May 11, 2018 9:06 am
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Joe Bretherton who is still only 22 made his return from injury last night in the reserves. Wigan beat Bradford 54 - 10 and he played very well. Lets hope he stay injury free.
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Re: Project Players - Yay or Nay?
Post Fri May 11, 2018 9:43 am
Posted by King Johns II on Fri May 11, 2018 9:43 am
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Nobody is actually answering the original question here..........Project Players Yeh or Neh.........its a Neh for me because I dont think Wane is a good enough "coach" to take these projects to the next level. Only successful projects I can think of have been Ben Flower, Tony Clubb and Anthony Gelling (ish)

There is a list of negative / poor projects - Andy Powell, Sam Hopkins, Rhodri Lloyd, Karl Pryce, plus many more.
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