Wigan coach Shaun Wane insists George Williams has not been affected by recent speculation linking him with a move Down Under.
NRL’s official site (NRL.com) released a story on Friday morning in which Williams stated that he wants to move over to Australia at some point in his career.
Williams played his first game in nearly two months on Friday night after making a full recovery from a knee injury. He helped the Warriors beat Castleford Tigers 24-22 in the opening round of the Super 8s.
But Wane insists Williams remains focused on Wigan at the minute.
He said: “I’ve had a chat with George and it is no distraction to George at all.
“He did an interview quite a while ago but they have only released it now which is bad timing.
“It is up to Ian [Lenagan, chairman] and Kris [Radlinski, executive director] what they do with George for next year but he is pretty strong-willed and he has a strong head, so that won’t affect him and I thought his performance indicated that.
“He was good in the first half but was a bit quiet in the second half. He looked a threat when he had the ball and I’m happy with how he went for his first game back. Him and Joe [Greenwood] have got a good relationship and I thought they bounced off each other well and I think it will get better and better.”
Wigan were 20-0 ahead against Castleford at half-time, but the Tigers fought back in the second half.
And Wane admitted that he was worried in the latter stages of the game.
He added: “I was concerned in the second half, but Sam [Tomkins] changed the game when he came back on.
“One thing we have focused on in the last two weeks is our defence and I thought we was good in the first half. We looked patient with the ball and we picked them off when we could but then we went away from doing that.
“We were under the pump. We lost Sam, Gabe [Hamlin] and Clubby [Tony Clubb] for a long time and at one point, we only had one available player on the bench.
“I would have liked it to have been a convincing win but it wasn’t. It will be an easy review for the players.”