Identifying the top signings of each club over a period of 25 years is difficult to say the least.
What criteria do we base it on? Rather than individual points scored, we base our choice on the impact each signing had on their respective clubs.
Here are Wigan Warriors’ top five Super League signings.
Have Wigan had an overseas signing as much loved as Pat Richards in the modern game? Probably not and here’s why; the rangy winger joined in 2006 and left at the end of 2013, with almost 2,500 points and nearly 250 appearances later. In that time, Richards won the 2010 and 2013 Super League Grand Finals as well as the 2011 Challenge Cup. Individually, however, his achievements were incredible; he was awarded the Man of Steel in 2010 and became the highest overseas points-scorer in the competition’s history.
One man that could rival Pat Richards for a favourite adopted Wiganer is Tommy Leuluai. Signing from Harlequins RL ahead of the 2007 season, the halfback became an instant hit in Lancashire, helping to steer Wigan to a Grand Final victory in 2010 and then a Challenge Cup success a year later. Though the Kiwi left to join New Zealand Warriors in 2013, Leuluai returned in 2017 like the prodigal son, winning a second Super League title in 2018. He is still a major star in the Warriors side.
Signing from NRL side Newcastle Knights ahead of the 2008 season, George Carmont became a cult hero overnight at the DW Stadium, appearing in the Super League Dream Team in his first year. The centre spent five seasons at Wigan, scoring 79 tries in 153 appearances and winning the 2010 Super League Grand Final as well as the 2011 Challenge Cup. Carmont formed a formidable partnership with his wing partner Richards as Wigan fans will certainly remember fondly.
Despite playing just two seasons in Super League, Trent Barrett’s impact on his English club Wigan was seriously impressive. The ex-St George playmaker carried the Warriors side in 2007 and 2008, scoring 26 tries and leading them to the semi-finals of the play-offs in both years. The 2007 Rugby League Writers’ Association Player of the Year bowed out with no medal to show for it, though he did stamp his mark firmly on the northern hemisphere.
One of the quickest wingers to ever grace the UK shores, Brett Dallas made a name for himself with the Warriors over a period of seven seasons. Though he lost Grand Finals in 2000, 2001 and 2003, Dallas did lift the Challenge Cup with Wigan in 2002 in what was a case of “almost there” for the club in the early noughties. He made 156 appearances during his time in England, scoring 89 tries and firmly establishing himself in the Lancashire club’s folklore.