View all 1189 updates ›

Wigan's Gareth Hock joins Widnes Vikings on loan

Gareth Hock while playing for England in December Credit: Dave Howarth/DAH Sports Images/Press Association Images

Wigan Warriors have announced their back row Gareth Hock is joining Widnes Vikings on a season-long loan.

The club said the deal will run until November 2013, but could be extended.

Vikings will pay warriors a 'significant ongoing' fee for Hock.

It follows an acrimonious end to 2012 when Hock demanded more money, a move to Australia and then wanted to discuss moving to another Super League Club.

He refused to return for pre-season training at Wigan after Christmas and told the club he would not be continuing his career there.

Wigan chairman Ian Lenagan said: "Gareth Hock has made it clear in face-to-face discussions with me and via his agent that he has no intention of playing for the Wigan club. This is hugely disappointing to me, to the Wigan fans and to the club who have all treated him well.

"We have gone to unique lengths to help him get his life back on track after his ban two years ago including increasing his contract voluntarily on two separate occasions to help him financially against a backdrop of his threats to leave.

"The Wigan club has consistently supported the player and has done all that any club could be asked to do."

Mr Lenagan said Hock will not be allowed to play against Wigan and that he and club were determined for him not to play for one of their "major competitors".

Mr Lenagan added: "It is known that Gareth was upset that Shaun Wane took away his number 12 Squad Number – hardly surprising in the light of his expected departure to Australia – but we were expecting him to concentrate on his injury rehabilitation and to fight for his place in the Team.

“Having stood by Gareth Hock, we feel let down by his attitude under both Michael Maguire and Shaun Wane since returning to play for Wigan.”

"I have instructed Wigan staff to now leave this issue behind, concentrate upon the coming season and make no further comment."

More on this story