Huddersfield Giants will get an early chance to test Wigan’s new half-back partnership.
Wigan coach Shaun Wane has confirmed 20-year-old George Williams will get the first chance to fill the boots of Australian playmaker Blake Green, who left the Warriors at the end of last season to return to the NRL with Melbourne Storm.
Wane says he never contemplated bringing in a replacement from outside the club as he puts his faith in the homegrown Williams to play alongside England scrum-half Matty Smith.
That means Williams and Smith will test out their fledgling partnership in the second week of the new Super League season at home to the Giants on Friday, February 13.
But the Wigan boss is relaxed about the prospect.
“I didn’t look at anybody (else),” Wane said. “I’m quite stubborn, once I go with something, I stay with it, I stick with my convictions.
“He’s not under any pressure from me because I know he can play. Whether it happens in the next 10 or 20 games, I’m not that bothered, I’m willing to keep working with him.
“It took Blake Green and Matty Smith a long time to work together and now we’re asking a 20-year-old kid to do that.
“There’s a lot for George to learn - he’s still only very young - but he defends tough and he will learn. He’s finding his feet at the minute and I’m willing to give him all the time he needs. There is no doubt in my mind he’s going to be a top player.”