Gold Coast captain Ryan James has been flattered by two attempts by Wigan to sign him and believes it gave him the belief that he could ‘do anything’.
Brian Foley, who produced many Wigan greats, was working as the club’s youth development manager when he identified James’ talents in 2006.
James was touring England as an Under-15s player from the Northern Rivers when he trained at Wigan’s facilities and played in front of Foley.
“I met Brian Foley when I was there, and he asked if I was keen to play at Wigan,” James told NRL.com.
“I’d grown up being coached by my dad through juniors and when someone like Brian asks you to play overseas it makes you realise you must be doing something half right
“It gave me the belief that I could do anything. I was just 15 and you never think at that age that you can really play footy as a job, even though it is something you want to do.
“I was away from family and didn’t know what to think of it at the time. I thought ‘is this real? Can I really pursue something in England?’”
James made his NRL debut for the Titans back in 2010 and has scored 30 tries in 138 games for the club to date.