Warrington’s spine is as good as any in world rugby league, according to new boss Daryl Powell.
The Wolves began pre-season training under their new head coach this week. Powell has linked up with the Wolves from Castleford on a three-year contract.
Powell is licking his lips at the thought of working with a spine consisting of Stefan Ratchford, Gareth Widdop, George Williams and Daryl Clark next season.
He said: “Ryan Sheridan (assistant) asked me last night what would the 17 be. I’m not going to tell you guys what I said but as you are going through the names of players, you get from 1-7 and you are going ‘wow, that is a fair team of backs’.
“Widdop, Williams, Ratchford and Clark at nine with Danny Walker as an option, that’s great.
“They are great people to have in your squad. They are as good as anything in Super League and potentially in the world of rugby league.”
Daryl Powell tips Matty Ashton for bright future
England Knights speedster Matty Ashton has been given the number five shirt at Warrington for 2022. He has taken the number from Josh Charnley, who has taken the two jersey following Tom Lineham’s departure to Wakefield.
Powell admits he sees Ashton as primarily a winger and has been impressed by the 23-year-old in pre-season.
He said: “I think at the moment that’s exactly where I see him. For the moment Stef Ratchford is embedded as the number one and Matty has shown he can play there.
“I’ve sat down with him and told him exactly where I see him. I really like him as a player, he has electric speed and he is growing physically in his stature as well. I love his attitude.
“As a full-back, there are skill sets that are needed there so yesterday I challenged him. He just needs to be constantly working on that because if he wants to play full-back in the future, which I know he does, then all those little things are so important to him.
“At this moment in time I see him as a winger and as an outstanding winger. There are some bits that he needs to improve like every player but I’ve been really impressed with him as a person and a player.”