Wigan confirm Williams departure
The Warriors have confirmed that stand-off George Williams will leave the Club at the end of the season to take up a contract in the NRL after accepting an undisclosed transfer fee from an NRL Club.
Williams has helped the Warriors to two Betfred Super League titles and a World Club Challenge and has made 172 appearances for his home-town club.
Radlinski said: “George has developed into one of the world’s finest half-backs, and although we are naturally disappointed to lose a home-grown player of his calibre, we wish him the best in his move to the NRL – I have no doubt he’ll take that competition by storm.
“On a personal level, it has been great to see George develop from a 12-year old junior into the player he is today. He has the complete skillset of an international class half-back. George has never hidden away from me his ambitions to test himself in another league and experience a new lifestyle, and we feel that this is the right time for us to grant his wish having turned down several approaches for his services in the last three years.
“I have no doubts in my mind that George will continue to show his skill and leadership for the remainder of his time with us and I’m sure our loyal fans will continue to support him for the rest of the season.”
Speaking about his future move, Williams said: “Firstly I want to say a massive thanks to everyone at Wigan Warriors for everything they have done for me. Those people who have supported me, coached me and played with me – I really appreciated your support.
“I’ve been at Wigan since I was 12 years old and I have managed to live my dream playing 170+ games and winning two Grand Final’s for my hometown club, along the way making some incredible memories and friends for life.
“Another dream of mine was always to play and to test myself in the NRL so I want to thank Ian Lenagan and Kris Radlinski for their understanding in allowing me to do this. It is something I have always wanted to pursue and playing in the NRL big goal of mine, so I’m excited and very much looking forward to the massive challenge ahead.
“Most importantly, although I will leave at the end of the season it doesn’t change my attitude for the remaining games of this year. I will give everything I’ve got to go out on the highest and best way possible with my best mates.”
As part of the release agreement, Wigan Warriors can confirm that they have first refusal for George Williams’ services should he return to the Betfred Super League once his time in the NRL has come to an end.