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Gareth Widdop facing fan pressure to join former club following return to Australia

Gareth Widdop is currently “recharging” – his own words – in Australia as the Warrington Wolves prepare to enter into a new era at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.

Widdop himself has been handed the number 6 shirt by incoming head coach Daryl Powell, who joins Warrington after eight-and-a-half years at Super League rivals Castleford Tigers, and looks certain to play a key part in the Wolves’ attempt to win silverware under new leadership.

However, the English playmaker has recently returned to Australia to be with his family after spending most of the 2021 Super League season without them – a move which has led to calls from St George Illawarra Dragons fans for Widdop to return to the Red Vee.

The 32-year-old endured a difficult 2020 Super League season, before impressing in 2021 enough to be included on the Man of Steel shortlist – though he eventually lost out to Sam Tomkins.

It can be considered even more of a stellar season considering he did it without his family being there to support him.

But, even when Widdop returned to Australia over a fortnight ago, he was subjected to strict hotel quarantine rules which meant he could not see his family, and, he documented that hell on social media.

Widdop’s latest post on a beach was met with comments from Dragons fans such as “come back to Saints lad” as well as “come back to dragons”.

Late last week, Australian journalist Phil ‘Buzz’ Rothfield said Widdop ‘might get picked up’ by an NRL club following his recent stay, but he is still firmly in Warrington’s plans moving forward.

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