Ryan Hampshire drops hint on Wigan Warriors future and reveals ‘options’

Ross Heppenstall
Wigan Warriors' Ryan Hampshire

Ryan Hampshire says he is open to the prospect of staying at Wigan Warriors beyond this season – but hinted he has other options on the table.

The versatile 29-year-old back played in last night’s 10-8 win at Castleford Tigers after lining up alongside Harry Smith in the halves.

Hampshire could be given an extended run in the side with Jai Field set for a period on the sidelines with a hamstring injury sustained during the Challenge Cup final victory over Warrington Wolves.

Field’s absence saw Bevan French moved to full-back against Castleford with Hampshire brought back into the side to play against his former club. It remains to be seen, though, where a player who turns 30 in December will be plying his trade next year.

Hampshire told Love Rugby League: “It’s probably up to Wigan whether it’s worth having me around because I don’t play that much. If I get a run in the team now then let’s hope I can sell myself and get something sorted from that.”

Hampshire hinted that he is speaking to Wigan and other clubs about a deal for 2025.

“There’s a bit of both – there have been talks, but nothing really signed, so we’ll see what happens,” he added. “Over the last few seasons, I’ve only signed one-year deals so I never get to be secure.

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“I’m getting a bit older now, so I’d like some security. It’s not really that interesting when you’re coming to the end and you’re not playing that much.

“It’s only interesting when you’re playing and when you’re performing. The last three years have been frustrating because I’ve had injuries and barely played.

“I just want to put some games together and take it from there.”

Hampshire rejoined Wigan at the start of last season on a one-year deal while recovering from a serious knee injury.

Head coach Matt Peet handed him another 12-month contract but he has struggled for game-time with Field, French and Smith the first-choice at full-back, stand-off and scrum-half respectively.

Hampshire, though, was delighted to play a part in last night’s win against the Tigers, which he felt was a welcome antidote to his performance in the Super League win at Warrington a fortnight ago.

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“Over the past year, I’ve not really had back-to-back games,” he said. “I just tried to build through the game against Cas and hopefully I can keep doing that over the next few weeks.

“It’s been tough to get into the team and I’ve got three world-class players in my position, so I’ve never really had chance to get a run because obviously those boys play there.

“They’ve not really been injured since I came to the club and I’ve picked up a couple of injuries, so that’s kind of kept me out as well. It was good to get back out there because a couple of weeks ago I had a pretty embarrassing performance at Warrington.

“I wasn’t physically ready, but it was good to get back out there and I don’t mind playing in the halves or at full-back.

“I know I can do well in both positions, it’s just about getting some time to play but I really enjoyed it against Castleford. They gave us a really tough game and these are the kind of games you enjoy the most.

“We celebrated after winning the Challenge Cup at Wembley and the week leading up to the Cas game was low in intensity. But we just knew we had to turn up and get the win at all costs, so it’s one we’ll enjoy.

“I enjoyed my time at Cas and there are some good people here, so it’s good to see them improving.”

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