Wolves to face VikingsHead Coach Paul Cullen has named his side to face Widnes Vikings in the WIRE FM Boxing Day Challenge, Friday 26th December 2003, kick off 3.00pm:Nick OwenPhil BerryRichard VarkulisBen WestwoodDean GaskellJamie DurbinGary HulseWarren StevensMark GleesonMark HiltonMike WainwrightJerome GuissetPaul NooneLiam McGovinJohn PickersgillSteve PickersgillPhil BraddishDave AshtonPlayer Background:Phil Braddish - 21, plays second row and is a strong running back row forward who has made 7 appearances for the U21s scoring a try. PhilĘs junior club is local club Crosfields. Phil featured in the New Zealand A game in October.Jamie Durbin - 19, scrum half/stand off made his first Super League debut for the Wolves against WIGAN WARRIORS in Round 21. JAMIE signed for the Wolves when he was 12 from Halton Hornets ARLFC, Widnes and has played for the Wolves in the Junior and Senior Academy. This season JAMIE has made 20 appearances for the Senior Academy scoring 4 tries and 2 Drop Goals. He made his debut for the first team in a pre-season friendly against his hometown team Widnes in the WIRE FM Boxing Day Challenge (26/12/02) scoring a try. JAMIE was also selected as the August edition RUGBY LEAGUE WORLDĘS Young Player to watch.Dean Gaskell - 20, wing. Dean made his debut for the Wolves first team against St. Helens in August 2002; unfortunately, he injured his Achilles in that game and was sidelined for the rest of the season. Gaskell is a former Wigan St. PatrickĘs amateur who spent three years with the Wigan Warriors Junior Academy. He is a utility player who prefers to play on the wing. Scored his first Super League try against Halifax in Round 26.Mark Gleeson - 21, hooker. Gleese re-signed pre-season after taking time out last season to travel in Australia. Mark signed for the Wolves originally in 1999 to the Academy from the amateur club, Ince St. Williams. He progressed through the ranks making his debut for the first team against Bradford Bulls in 2001 scoring a try in his debut.Jermome Guisset - 25, prop/second row. Hard hitting prop Guisset has proved himself last season representing his country, France in internationals and playing in the World 7Ęs in Australia in January 2003 and played in Russia in the Triangular Nations, which France won this year. Jerome has also represented his country in the European Nations, but missed out on the Final against England at Wilderspool due to injury. He is strong and dependable who is a threat to any opposition. Jerome was only the second Frenchman to play first grade rugby in Australia and the Wolves first ever Frenchman.Mark Hilton - 28, prop. Mark enters his tenth season with the Wolves and is in his Testimonial year. Mark is one of the clubĘs most experienced players at the age of 28. Beast as he popularly known by the crowd for his aggression in defence proved himself having spent the 2001out of the game with injury. He is back to his renowned form and was rewarded by being chosen for the Lancashire squad for the Origin Series 2002.Gary Hulse - 21, halfback who signed from Crosfields in 2000 playing for the Academy making his Super League debut in Super League VI with a try on his debut against Castleford. This pocket dynamo has surprised many when he donned a Super League jersey. Small in statue he may be, but Gary is big on heart and big on ability, Gary has evolved as an outstanding scrum half with competitive nature and a burning ambition to be the very best at his trade. Gary has made 17 appearances for the first team this season scoring 2 tries, his favourite one against his hometown club Widnes at the Halton Stadium.Liam McGovin - 19, stand off/loose forward, played his junior rugby at Halton Hornets ARLFC, Widnes along with Jamie Durbin. Was named Top Gun at the U16Ęs National Camp in 2000. Signed for St Helens and played in theyĘre Academy system U18s/U21s. Has joined the Wolves U21s.Paul Noone - 21, prop/second row who signed at the age of 14 from Widnes Tigers to the Wolves Academy. Nooney has a superb defensive ability and is constantly working hard throughout the game. In attack he has good hands and is always willing to take the ball forward. Talented back rower, uncomprising defender with great vision; he creates opportunities for the people around him. A versatile player who can adapt to most positions on the field. Paul has made 26 appearances this season scoring a try against Wakefield in the last TetleyĘs Super League fixture ever at Wilderspool.Nick Owen - 19, fullback signed from Woolston Rovers in 2001 and has worked his way up through the ranks featuring in 2001/2002 in the Junior Academy before moving into the Senior Academy last season, this season he has made 14 appearances, scoring 2 tries and kicking 63 goals and 1 Drop Goal. Nick made his first team debut for the Wolves in the WIRE FM Boxing Day Challenge (26/12/02) scoring a try and being chosen as the Man of the Match.Steve Pickersgill - 18 second row/forward. Steve has signed with the Wolves under an educational apprenticeship in conjunction with Warrington Borough Council. Rugby League runs in the family, his father; Roy played for Warrington in the 1970s and his brother John Pickersgill plays with the WarringtonĘs U21s. Squadbuilder fans organisation, in which they pay his wages by contributing ś5.00 a month, sponsors ęPickĘ. Steve has played mainly for the U18Ęs this season, but has lined up next to his brother in the U21s scoring 3 tries from 6 appearances.John Pickersgill - 19 prop signed for Wolves U21s from Crosfields ARLFC in 2002. Captained BARLA in their recent tour of Australia in April 2003. John started his Rugby League career at the age of 14, having played football before then. Brother of Steve.Warren Stevens - 25, prop/second row. Warren another former Wolves player (Mike Wainwright also returned at the beginning of the 2003 season from Salford City Reds) who returned to the ranks under Head Coach Paul Cullen. Warren signed towards the end of TetleyĘs Super League VII from NFP Whitehaven; he originally signed for the clubĘs Academy in 1996 and made his debut against Bradford Bulls at the age of 17. Warren represented the GB Academy side in 1997 against France. In 1999 he spent a year in Australia playing a country level for Clarence in south Brisbane, before signing for Salford City Reds in 2001. Warren has made 24 appearances for the first team this season.Mike Wainwright - 28, loose forward. Mike a Warrington old boy who returned last season after a three-year spell with Salford City Reds. Mike originally signed for the Wolves in 1994-5 from local amateur club, Woolston Rovers. Wainwright was the product of the successful Wolves Academy and played alongside Paul Sculthorpe and Iestyn Harris. Wainwright has the ability to play loose forward or second row.Ben Westwood - 21, centre, signed from Wakefield Trinity Wildcats in June 2002 on a two and half year deal. Ben started his Rugby League career with the Wildcats Academy in 1999. Ben has been touted as a ępotential GB playerĘ and was named in the Yorkshire team for the Origin Series 2002. Ben broke his leg in Round 5 against Bradford Bull in April, therefore making 18 appearances for the first team this season scoring 8 tries with two coming in the last TetleyĘs Super League game ever to be played at Wilderspool Stadium against his former club Wakefield in a 52-12 victory.Richard Varkulis - 20, centre, former club Leigh Miners ARLFC and also featured in the Leigh Academy in 2000, BARLA Great Britain Young Lions in 2001, signed to the U21s this season and scored 30 tries in 24 games. Richard has signed a full time one-year contract and has started training with the first team.<
Woody Faces SurgeryWarrington Wolves prop Paul Wood is due to see a specialist on Friday with regards to a rip to the cartilage in his shoulder which recent scans have indicated. If surgery is required it will be done on Friday, if that is the decision of the specialist. The injury is specific to the GB v New Zealand A game and GB have taken the responsibility for the medical procedures.Paul Wood is still expected to be available for the start of TetleyĘs Super League IX.<
Home Shirt - Super League IX SeasonThe Club would like to apologise to all of our fans for the delay in the Home Shirts for the 2004 season arriving at the shop at Wilderspool.This delay has unfortunately been totally out of the control of the Club. Whilst the original shirt launch date of 4 December 2003 for fans wanting their shirt for Christmas, has unfortunately not been achieved, we have now been advised that the shirts will be available for purchase from this week-end.Due to this delay, the Club shop will open on Sunday 21 December 2003 between the hours of 11.00 am and 3.00 pm for the benefit of our loyal fans (the best in Super League!)Our apologies once again.The prices are as last year: ś42.00 for Adults in sizes SML-XXXXXXL and ś32.00 for the children Small Boys ū XS<
Wolves Keep it YoungWarrington Wolves have signed young players Jamie Durbin, 19 on a three year contract which places him full-time, Steve Pickersgill, 18 on a part-time two year contract which is designed to see him progress through to a full time contract status within this period. Nick Owen, 19 has signed a one year contract which sees him move into the full time training squad alongside Jamie.Jamie Durbin, 19 made his first Super League debut for the Wolves in Rnd 21 of the TetleyĘs Super League VIII competition against WIGAN WARRIORS. JAMIE signed for the Wolves when he was 12 from Halton Hornets ARLFC, Widnes and has played for the Wolves in the Junior and Senior Academy. This season Jamie has made 17 appearances for the Senior Academy scoring 3 tries and 2 Drop Goals. He made his debut for the first team in a pre-season friendly against his home town team Widnes in the WIRE FM Boxing Day Challenge (26/12/02) scoring a try. Jamie was also selected as the August 2003 edition Rugby League World's Young Player to watch. Jamie featured at scrum half in the New Zealand ęAĘ tour game in October 2003.Jamie commented on going full time, "I have really enjoyed my time at Warrington Wolves and have worked well under the current coaching staff, so much so I want to carry on my career here. I am aiming to break into the first team squad with a view to becoming a regular."Steve Pickersgill, 18 second row/forward. Steve has signed with the Wolves under an educational apprenticeship inconjunction with Warrington Borough Council. Rugby League runs in the family, his father; Roy played for Warrington in the 1970s and his brother John Pickersgill plays with the WarringtonĘs U21s. ęPickĘ is sponsored by Squadbuilder fans organisation in which they pay his wages by contributing ś5.00 a month. Steve has played mainly for the U18Ęs this season, but has lined up next to his brother in the U21s scoring 3 tries from 6 appearances.Nick Owen, 19, fullback signed from Woolston Rovers in 2001 and has worked his way up through the ranks featuring in 2001/2002 in the Junior Academy before moving into the Senior Academy last season, this season he has made 14 appearances, scoring 2 tries and kicking 63 goals and 1 Drop Goal. Nick made his first team debut for the Wolves in the WIRE FM Boxing Day Challenge (26/12/02) scoring a try and being chosen as the Man of the Match. Nick played fullback in the New Zealand ęAĘ tour match in October 2003.Nick Owen, is a Warringtonian and it is very important for him to play his home town team, "I am pushing for a first team place, whether it is coming off the bench or starting, my main aim this season is to make and impact and be noticed. I have never considered going to another club as Warrington is my home town team and everyone always wants to play for their town team and IĘve achieved it."Head Coach Paul Cullen commented, "We are balancing the short term immediate needs of a progressive Senior squad with the long term production of our own young talent. Owen and Durbin are working full time within the Senior squad already and we expect Pickersgill to be breaking into that environment very shortly."
4 in a Row for Community AwardWarrington Wolves Community Development team won the Best Community Programme for the fourth time in succession at the annual Kingston Communication 2003 Super League Marketing awards ceremony held at the McAlpine Stadium.The award was accepted by Community and Marketing Manager Sean Mellor, Community Development Co-ordinator Debbie Blackburn and Warrington Borough Council Sports development Officer Neil Kelly. Sean paid particular tribute to all those that had helped maintain the high standard of Community activity within the club, with a special mention to hard work done by Debbie behind the scenes.Other nominations for the club during the evening were for Gina Coldrick's as best PR and Media department and Wolfie as Best Mascot.Sean was also the recipient of a Special Award of "Best Guerrilla Marketing Strategy" for the creative campaign for the home fixture against Widnes Vikings.
Pre-Season FriendliesThe Wolves have announced two pre-season with the first being the annual Wire FM Challenge on Boxing Day, followed by a match against the newly promoted Salford City Reds on 1st February.WIRE FM BOXING DAY CHALLENGEWarrington Wolves v Widnes VikingsFriday 26th December 2003Kick Off 3.00pmWarrington Wolves v Salford City RedsSunday 1st February 2004Kick Off 3:00pmBoth games take place at Wilderspool Stadium and the prices for both are as follows:Bevan Stand Adult: ś12Bevan Stand Concession: ś6Ground Adult: ś10Ground Concession: ś5
Varkulis Makes the GradeWarrington Wolves have signed their U21s centre Richard Varkulis, 20 on a full time contract for one year. Richard made an impact on the U21s this season when he scored 30 tries in 24 games. Richard signed from Leigh Miners ARLFC, but has also played for Leigh Academy in 2000. He also played for BARLA Great Britain Young Lions in 2001. Varkulis made his first grade debut for the Wolves against New Zealand 'A' on October 26th.Richard was delighted to sign a full time contract after finishing his Sports Science course at Liverpool John Moores University, "I like the set up at the Wolves and the coaching staff are great, they have offered me a full time contract and are investing in me, which I intend to pay them back by giving my all. The club is going places and I want to be part of it. I intend to train hard and break into the first team and then establish myself as a first team regular."Head Coach Paul Cullen commented, "Richard has signed a one year deal, full time contract, he has the potential to offer a very powerful and dynamic element to our squad and we will offer him every facility to fulfil that."
Young Wolves learn Aussie lessonWarrington's Junior Academy was given a tough lesson into the gulf in standards between our juniors and their peers in Sydney, when a strong Penrith Panthers U18 team visited Wilderspool on Saturday. The Panthers triumphed easily 62-18 underlining just how much work we have to do to put our youth development on the same level as the Australians.Warrington actually started the game looking the better side. They opened the scoring in the third minute with Dave Pennington pouncing on a kick to the corner which was scuffed by Laurence Enosi. Four minutes later they worked the ball to the right in tight space for flame haired centre Ian Wilkinson to register the Wolves' second. Owen goaled both to give a 12-0 lead, fair reward for a strong opening. With hooker Steve Sutcliffe probing and threatening the Panthers with his kicking, it looked like Warrington could give Sydney's finest a good shake.It took seventeen minutes for Penrith to get onto the scoresheet, but when they did they began to assert themselves on the game. Captain Ben Rogers, an outstanding figure from loose forward, chased a Harden grubber to break Penrith's duck, and four minutes later stepped inside the Wire defence to bring the scores to 12-10.With the Panthers enjoying good possession they mounted a number of attacks on the Warrington line, and the defence faltered in the face of the dangerous hooker Keith Peters, who dashed over from acting half in the 24th minute and repeated the dose in the 27th minute to open up a ten point gap.Warrington threatened a fightback with a backline move finding space on the left for Dave Pennington to score his second try of the game. Owen's third conversion out of three pulled the scores back to 18-22 and game on.It was to be the last time the Wolves would interest the scoreboard attendants. With six minutes to go to half time, Peters scored his hat-trick try, dragging a couple of tacklers over the line with him under the posts. He went off with an injury shortly afterwards but Penrith rolled on, scoring on the stroke of half time when a towering bomb from Mitch Heterick led to a try in the left hand side from Charles Enosi.At 38-18 to Penrith, Warrington needed to hit back straight away in the second half, but they were blown away by a Panthers side which started the second period in awesome fashion. Led by their powerful forwards, they dominated possession and scored shortly after the interval moving the ball quickly out to the right for a try to Matthew Forwood. He missed converting his own try but when Ben Rogers performed an audacious ball steal and went under the sticks it opened up the thirty point gap from which Warrington would never recover.In the 53rd minute, fullback Ronnie Palauch got a ball away falling in the tackle to centre Geoff Daniella . The left centre was a dangerous customer all afternoon, and with some light footed stepping he beat the defence and scored what was to be the first of his hat-trick. Stand-off Michael Carl, who was most impressive, sneaked round a tackle to set up a move which resulted in Daniella's second try and a couple of minutes later the assured Rogers made another break down the left hand channel to give Daniella his hat-trick. Forwood's conversion took the score to 62-18.That would be the last scoring action of the game, which broke out into a 26 man brawl which erupted and re-erupted in several areas of the pitch. Warrington's Lee Smith was sent off along with Ben Rogers who marred his copybook after an excellent game.The final score was disappointing for the Warrington Academy side although they were missing several "big guns" including Jamie Durbin, Mike Govin and Tommy Grundy. It will have been valuble experience for next years Junior Academy players to come up against a very strong Penrith side, and the fans who braved the cold at Wilderspool will have had a sneak preview at some of the names who will be gracing the NRL before too long. Whenever the Panthers attacked down the left hand side through Carl, Rogers and Daniella, they looked dangerous and it's a fairly safe bet that those guys will be pushing hard for first grade within two seasons. Warrington U18: 1 Nick Owen, 2 David Yii, 3 Ian Wilkinson, 4 Craig Ashall, 5 David Pennington, 6 Chris Hill, 7 Craig Cornelia, 8 Matthew Pitt, 9 Steve Sutcliffe, 10 Dave Saxon, 11 Matthew Clarke, 12 Zac Elston, 13 Steve PickersgillSubs: 14 Mark Omar, 15 Matty Barber, 16 Lee Smith, 17 Craig TipeneTries: Pennington (3), (31), Wilkinson (7)Goals: Owen 3Penrith U18: 1 Ronnie Paluch, 2 Matthew Hawke, 3 Matthew Forwood, 4 Geoff Daniella, 5 Troy Annett, 6 Mike Carl, 7 Ben Harden, 8 Andy Pearn, 9 Keith Peters, 10 Junior Moors, 11 Matthew Penese, 12 Lawrence Enosi, 13 Ben RogersSubs: 14 Charles Enosi, 15 Mitch Heterick, 16 Dean Jones, 17 Jaye MairleitnerTries: Rogers (17, 21, 46), Peters (24, 27, 34), C Enosi (39), Forwood (43), Daniella (53, 60, 62), Hetterick (66)Goals: Forwood 10Referee: Peter Taberner
Wilshere SignsWarrington Wolves have signed John Wilshere from St George on a two year deal commencing Tetley's Super League IX. Wilshere, a fullback or wing is 1.85m and weighs in at 93kg.John's former clubs include Penrith Panthers (2002), Melbourne Storm (1998) and Pert Reds (1997) where he made his debut. His international honours are playing for Papua New Guineas from 1997 - to date.Tests: 8 Tests for PNG 2000 - 2001, World Cup for PNG 2000Junior Club: Waterford Demons, BrisbanePrevious Clubs: Perth Reds 1997, Melbourne Storm 1998, Penrith PanthersFirst Grade Debut: Perth v. Canterbury at Belmore, July 13, 1997 (Rd 15)Head Coach, Paul Cullen commented on his latest signing, "John possesses natural speed, great footwork and great hands, he adds another x-factor to our back line and offers International and NRL experience."
Fans thoughts of The Halliwell Jones StadiumWarrington Wolves opened the doors on Monday 24th November 2003 to The Halliwell Jones Stadium for the first time for their fans to come and have a look around the new facilities and giving them the opportunity to purchase a season ticket before the Earlybird deadline expires on Monday 1st December. The response to the Open Day was overwhelming with more than four thousand fans coming through the doors between 2-8pm. The fans were able to walk around the pitch, terracing and seats to get a feel for the view on a matchday.The Halliwell Jones Stadium will open for business on Saturday 21st February 2004 when Wolves take on Wakefield Trinity Wildcats live on Sky, 6:00pm kick off.Community and Marketing Manager Sean Mellor stated, "The excitement of the Warrington Public on seeing the Wolves' new home has been reflected in their eagerness to snap up season tickets. With less than a week to go before the Earlybird Season Ticket deadline and three months to go to the Tetley's Super League IX home opener at The Halliwell Jones Stadium, sales are already at record levels. In fact, after only 20 days last year's season ticket sales have been exceeded."And here is what some of the Warrington fans thought on their first walk round of The Halliwell Jones Stadium, Ian Kelly, 39 commented, "After all the years of anxiety and heartache, waiting for the tortuous planning process to be resolved, actually being able to walk into our bright new stadium, take a seat in the stands and look out on to the pitch, was an incredible feeling.As I sat there and enjoyed my first close look at our superb new home, I thought about Wilderspool and all the great players I have been lucky enough to see there - John Bevan, Alex Murphy, Les Boyd, Mike Gregory, Des Drummond, Jonathan Davies, Paul Sculthorpe...the list goes on.And then I thought about the feel good vibe created by Paul Cullen and his team over the past year, and about the great times that hopefully lie ahead for us at The Halliwell Jones Stadium. It's a new dawn for Warrington, and time for a fresh generation of heroes, starting now with the likes of Graham Appo, Paul Wood and Brent Grose.Thinking of how the stadium will look, when it is packed to the rafters with fans in primrose and blue, sent a tingle down my spine.We have left Wilderspool with dignity and smiles - we can now go to The Halliwell Jones Stadium with hope, optimism and a determination to succeed."Stephen (42) and Sam Cullen (8) also visited The Halliwell Jones Stadium on Monday, "After just visiting The Halliwell Jones Stadium with my 8 year old son I would just like to say WOW, very impressive and also seems to be plenty of easy access and superb visibility no matter where you stand or sit within the stadium, and judging by the comments that were said by other people visiting the ground, the atmosphere is going to be terrific. Well done to a superb stadium that Wire fans can and will be proud of, and plenty of visiting fans will be jealous of."Bernard Bretherton, a member of the Vice Presidents and a wheel chair user was delighted with the disabled facilities on offer, "The facilities at The Halliwell Jones Stadium are fantastic, I was very impressed with the disabled facilities, actually I was very surprised about how much thought had gone into making disabled people very welcome and comfortable. I was apprehensive about the move, but after being shown round I am really looking forward to it now."