First and foremost, can I say a massive thank you to everyone who took part in the vote for Wigan’s Super League 13 – a vote for fans to decide on the best players who have played for Wigan in the summer era. We had over 900 votes, which for us, as a new website, is an unbelievable achievement, so thank you.
So, a look at the results:
Starting with Kris Radlinski, the undisputed Wigan number 1 with 74% of the vote, which with Sam Tomkins for company in the voting for the full back position, is quite some achievement. Radlinski is Mr Wigan, with 322 appearances, 182 tries and 1 goal and now a director at Wigan – who can argue with his place in Wigan’s Super League 13.
The wingers proved to be a much closer vote with Jason Robinson achieving 31%, Pat Richards 27% and Offiah in 3rd with 25%. Martin Offiah commented on our twitter post to suggest that his selections would be Robinson, Richards and with Josh Charnley running them close. He did add that in 10 years time, Joe Burgess would probably be his pick particularly if he continues in the form in which he has started his second stint at Wigan in. Its interesting that Offiah generated so many votes when he snuck into the eligibility for the vote after only playing 7 games for Wigan in the Super League, returning an impressive 28 points in those games.
The centre selection of Gary Connolly and George Carmont surprised me a little, particularly with Steve Renouf in the mix for the vote. Carmont was the clear fans favourite with 28% of the vote, a player whom Ian Lenagan recently described as his best ever signing in his ten years of being owner of Wigan. In second, Connolly achieved 24% of the fan vote, 5% ahead of former Australian test centre, Renouf. Who can ever forget that Renouf break at the JJB in the last minutes against Bradford to set up Radlinski? Here you go: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vm9ju_ybSJY
The half backs, again with Shaun Edwards only playing a handful of games in the Super League era for Wigan posed a tricky choice for many people. Choosing from Edwards, Lam, Barrett and Leuluai – not to mention George Williams who, in a few years time may come out at the top of this poll if retaken. The overwhelmingly winners in this category however were Edwards and Barrett with 28% and 24% of the vote, respectively. Adrian Lam and Thomas Leuluai tied in 3rd place with 12% of the vote. Matty Smith, a two time Super League winner with Wigan and Lance Todd Trophy in 2013, achieved 1 vote out of the 900+ votes – poor Matty! However his return to the dark side of Billinge Hill may have had an impact of that.
The props, O’Connor and Fielden were selected in the closest vote of the poll. Craig Smith missed out on the selected team by 2%, whilst Neil Cowie and Ben Flower were not too far away. Terry Newton was selected as the teams hooker with a massive 58% of the vote with McIllorum coming in second ahead of Australian’s Mark Riddell and Robbie McCormack (there was even two votes for Leigh captain Micky Higham!). McCormack was the hooker in the inaugural Grand Final in 1998 and who remembers THAT hit on him from Adrian Morley at Central Park – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2HCyzM0V4pk
The second row vote suggests that we are currently in a period of immense wealth in that position, with current second rowers John Bateman and Liam Farrell being selected. Second row in certainly an area in which Wigan have had strength in depth currently and in the past and it is a real acknowledgement to Bateman and Farrell to be selected ahead of (in order of the vote), Dennis Betts, Ryan Hoffman, Mick Cassidy and David Furner.
I mentioned on a previous post that the loose forward vote was intentionally tricky, many people would find a place for Andrew Farrell and Sean O’Loughlin in their 13 somewhere, if not in a match day 17. However, we made it a straight shoot out between these two causing much deliberation for many on this. Having said that, I was very surprised to see Andrew Farrell win this contest by achieving a huge 76% of the vote! I am sure O’Loughlin would be on many peoples interchange bench, if we added that to the vote.
The coach vote was a big win for Michael Maguire, who clearly had a big impact on the club in his two years in the UK; current coach, Shaun Wane finished in second place.
There you have it, the #WiganSuperLeague13, thanks again for those who contributed.