Wigan Warriors have moved top of the league and their wins over St Helens and Warrington Wolves were key to that but the comments Jon Wilkin made after those games about the Warriors stirred up much debate.
After they defeated St Helens he said of their defence at the ruck:
“Take note of how slow every single ruck was there.
“Wigan are happy just to push the letter of the law right to the end and slow rucks down.
“They would rather concede a penalty, like any team in Super League would, they would rather concede a penalty than give a quick ruck away.”
The Warriors were again brilliant as they defeated then league leaders Warrington Wolves away with a dominant and controlled display.
Again, Wilkin said they were pushing rule to the limit:
“If I was a Warrington fan, I am trying to get into the head of a really serious Warrington fan, you know a season ticket holder, I think they go away aggrieved with the referee tonight for a couple of reasons.
“The first being Wigan slowed the ruck down to an almost painful pace. I am not trying to say that is a fair reflection of the game but I feel like that is what a Warrington fan might feel.
“We have to be balanced, I think Wigan got the better of it in terms of the ruck and have really dominated teams in that area and just pushing that rule to the limit.”
Wilkin has since defended those comments by likening Wigan to an “aroused dog.”
“I thought they slowed the game down to a painful pace and what I mean by that is the game of rugby league is a physical battle where the team with the ball want to play the ball quickly and start play quickly whilst the defending team have to have effort, discipline and commitment to stop that and I thought Wigan dominated that situation and front loaded their energy into controlling the speed of this big Warrington team.
“So if anything what I said is a compliment.
“When I look at Matt Peet’s team I use the analogy that Wigan are like an aroused dog that has taken a shining to your leg. You shake it off but you can’t get rid of it but it keeps coming back for more.”