Deacon can’t wait to play for Wigan


New Wigan signing Paul Deacon cannot wait to play for his hometown club.

The former Bradford star missed the chance to make his debut against Wakefield in Sunday’s friendly but he is expected to feature against Leigh this weekend.

During the first of his three years at the club, Deacon will have dual roles; mixing playing with assisting coach Michael Maguire.

The 30-year old served the Bulls with distinction for 11 years, scoring over 2,300 points in little over 300 appearances and although he admits it was a wrench leaving the Yorkshire side, the appeal of playing for his boyhood club mixed with the coaching opportunity was an offer to good to refuse.

“I’ve always had an ambition to pull on the cherry and white as I was a massive fan as a kid,” he explained.

“It will be special when it happens but also the fact that the opportunity that the club has given me to go into the coaching career is one reason I joined.

“I’ve not done much coaching yet. I spoke to Michael when I first came to the club and he said first and foremost he wants me to concentrate on being a player for this year.

“He doesn’t want coaching to get in the way of that but he has said that he wants me to do bits and bobs as the season progresses.”

After notching up just one trophy in the ‘naughties’ Wigan have starved their fans of the success they once found so easy to come by.

During his time with Bradford, Deacon remained in Wigan and knows all too well how desperate the Warriors faithful are for success.

“I’m vey optimistic about what we can achieve this year,” he proclaimed. “I think we can achieve silverware, that’s what we’re going for definately.

“Wigan have always been a tough side, you never get an easy game against them. I’ve been down to this stadium many a time and come away losing so they’ve always not been far off. There are some other good sides out there as well. Hopefully this year will be the season where we can kick on and win something.”

The DW Stadium outfit made headlines this month when Michael Maguie announced the use of a ‘leadership group’ as opposed to just a single captain.

Last year’s skipper Sean O’Loughlin will be part of the group while the other four members have yet to be decided.

The move came as a surprise to Deacon but he is fully behind the new initiative.

He said: “It’s pretty new to everybody but I sat down and hought about it myself and thought, well whoever said there should just be one captain, one person in charge?

“There are a lot of pros to having a leadership, to put their point across and lead us on the field as well so I think it will work out well.

“Michael’s had experience before and it was positive for Melbourne so hopefully it will be positive for us.”

Deacon also reserved special praise for fellow scum half Sam Tomkins.

The 20-year old Wigan star is looking forward to being under the guidance of such an experienced star and Deacon says the feeling is reciprocated.

He added: “He’s got a great future in front of him, he’s a great athlete.

“He’s got a great pace to kick on and improve and I’m sure there’s a lot of improvement in him. He’s already played for the national side so when you can say that and say he’s got a lot of improvement as well, it’s an exciting time.”