Lee Briers reveals why he is leaving Wigan Warriors

There was shock news that emerged this morning with Lee Briers leaving the Wigan Warriors at the end of the season.

It ends a very short affiliation with the Cherry and Whites with Briers having just joined Wigan at the beginning of 2022.

Briers’ impact on the club has been obvious in such a short space of time with the halfback appearing to mentor the likes of Harry Smith with his development evident in 2022.

However, with Briers taking up a deal in the NRL with the Brisbane Broncos for 2023 and beyond, the Warriors are set to lose one of their most influential men.

And, now the former Warrington Wolves star has revealed why he is making the move.

Speaking to Wigan TV, Briers explained his decision: “It’s come out of the blue. I’ve always had an ambition to go to Australia to test myself and an opportunity has arisen to go to the NRL. Whilst I am excited to move, it is a bittersweet moment because I absolutely love it at Wigan. It’s been a tremendously tough decision to take but it’s one if I didn’t take, I would probably regret.

“If somebody had asked me 18 months ago, you are going to go to Wigan and enjoy it as much as you did, I would have just laughed. From minute one of coming here, I’ve felt wanted and welcome. The coaching staff have taken me in, and we’ve bonded – it’s probably the tightest coaching staff I’ve been involved in. It’s been a super tough decision, it’s gut-wrenching.

“I understand that this opportunity only arises because of the playing group and the staff. It wouldn’t have happened if the boys didn’t buy into what we do as coaching staff – there’s massive credit to the boys. This group of players are by far the most close-knit group of players who want to learn every day. They are unbelievable. They’ve taken me in, trusted me and they’ve delivered. Also, Matt Peet gives me that trust. Me and Matt go further than just coaching. When my mum passed away, he was the first one to come and grab me. He’s always had the trust in me and hopefully I’ve repaid my bit.

“I’ve actually loved coming into training each morning. Some people call it work – this isn’t work when you love it so much. People will say if you love it so much why will you leave, it’s not a case of that, it’s a case of wanting to go and experience something which has been burning inside of me since I was 15 years of age when I first toured Australia for the North West Counties.

“I keep catching myself thinking – I’m a St Helens fan through and through and I worked at Warrington for 25 years, but this is the place that has genuinely grabbed me without a shadow or a doubt. This place is something special and I’ll hold this dear to my heart.”

Briers will of course want to bow out with a Super League Grand Final victory after winning the Challenge Cup earlier this year.

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