The NSW Blues have been named for the first game of the 2017 #Origin series.
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The Wigan club have today responded angrily to comments made by two other clubs with regard to the signing of Stuart Fielden and the salary cap.
Brian Noble said,
"We are delighted to have signed Stuart and he is a great addition to our squad. The acquisition of Stuart is within the rules of the RFL and we refute any accusations made by anyone within the Rugby League fraternity. It is my job to carry on to turn this club around and improve performances of the players and try to avoid relegation."
Wigan Chairman Maurice Lindsay backed his Head Coach and today said,
"We are well in control of our salary cap and we have advised the Rugby Football League of our exact situation. Comments from two of our relegation rivals are I assume in respond to leading questions. We are well aware of our salary cap requirements and we are working within those requirements. It is no-ones business but I can volunteer the information that we have no further signings planned at this stage on the contrary we have lost some players today to retirement and movement to other clubs."
Lindsay also re-acted angrily to press speculation that the Fielden deal would cost ?1.5 million in total, Lindsay said,
"These days people seem to be able to simply think of a number and double it. It is a sad way to go about things but clubs just have to keep putting wild speculation right. Stuart Fielden will not be the highest paid player in the game although it is a very good contract and obviously better than the amount he earned at Bradford. He has also earned it. Wild speculation always comes up when Wigan sign a player. We were unable to sign Adrian Morley recently because the sums involved were too high for us and much more that we are paying Stuart Fielden. Stuart cannot be tagged as the highest paid player in the game because that will simply not be true."