Joe Shorrocks on working under Sean O’Loughlin, Wigan’s bond & learning from 2021

Josh McAllister
Joe Shorrocks

Photo courtesy of John Baldwin

Wigan loose forward Joe Shorrocks says 2021 was a learning curve for both himself and the club.

Warriors finished the 2021 campaign in fourth spot on the table, before falling to Leeds at home in the play-offs.

22-year-old Shorrocks was ever-present for the side, making 28 appearances and scoring twice.

He finished the year as Super League’s top tackler, making 833. He featured heavily at hooker, a position he had never before experienced.

“Before last year, I had never played hooker before,” he told Love Rugby League. 

“It’s definitely broadened my range of where I can play in what I can do on the pitch.”

Shorrocks eyeing up loose forward position in 2022

However, the youngster admits it isn’t his preferred position.

“Hopefully loose forward,” Shorrocks responded when asked where he wanted to play in 2022.

“That’s my preferred position. But if the team needed me to play nine, then I’ll certainly do that for the team.”

For Shorrocks, there won’t be much better to learn from than former skipper Sean O’Loughlin. The 39-year-old is in his second year as the club’s assistant coach, linking up with Matt Peet and Lee Briers in 2022.

Shorrocks continued: “Lockers has helped me out a lot in training. I just bounce ideas off him, if I can do this, what if I could do that, he’s been a real big help for me.”

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Wigan opened their 2022 campaign with a 24-10 victory over Hull KR at Craven Park.

Entering their first season under new coach Peet, Shorrocks says his side want to improve on last year, but won’t be putting too much pressure on themselves.

“Nothing’s really changed. Just as a team we’ve tried to fix what we felt we did wrong last year,” Shorrocks said.

“I feel we’re a lot closer. We’re bonding more this year. I don’t think much has changed with training, but we feel a lot closer.

“We felt we under achieved last year. We felt we needed to do better than we did. Hopefully this year we can improve on our performances from last year.

“We just hopefully want to do good stuff in this group and achieve more than we did last year.

“Just hopefully this year we will see an improvement on last year. We’re not putting too many labels on what we want to achieve.”

Wigan host Leeds in round two of the 2022 season at the DW Stadium on Friday night.

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