Bateman leaving Canberra for Wigan

SYDNEY (AFP) – England and Canberra Raiders backrower John Bateman will return to the Wigan Warriors for the 2021 season despite proving a big hit in Australia.

The 27-year-old, who was superb for the Raiders in 2019 but has been sidelined this year with a shoulder injury, said it was a hard call to make.

“It’s been a tough decision but to be back to Wigan, to be at home with my little girl, my mum and the rest of my family is something I can’t wait to experience once again,” he said
on Friday.

“I still have plenty of unfinished business with the Raiders and my focus now is to get myself back on the pitch as soon as possible and put myself in the frame for selection.”

He has signed a four-year deal with his old club Wigan after what will have been a two-year spell in Australia.

Bateman, voted last year’s best second-row forward in the National Rugby League, went under the knife in February and had been expected to make his return in June.