Joel Tomkins departs Warriors, signs for Hull KR

By Peter Hanson 11 June 2018 262
Joel Tomkins departs Warriors, signs for Hull KR

Joel Tomkins has left Wigan Warriors by mutual consent and signed for fellow Super League side Hull Kingston Rovers.

Earlier this month, the 31-year-old was handed a four-week suspension and £10,000 fine by the Warriors after footage emerged of the player abusing bar staff during a night out.

Wigan consequently confirmed on Monday that Tomkins, whose brother Sam was also present in the video and was hit with a £5,000 fine, has left the club, with Rovers later announcing he has signed an 18-month deal.

A statement from the Robins said the club had been "reassured by the player and other sources that the incident was out of character".

Tomkins added: "I'm sure everybody is aware of what's gone on at Wigan and I accepted the punishment from them. 

"After sitting down with my family and thinking a bit harder about it, I decided that the best thing for all parties would be for me to leave the club and I offered my resignation to Kris Radlinski, which he accepted.

"I instructed my agent to look into a deal elsewhere and there were a few other Super League clubs that were interested as well as Rovers, but [Rovers coach] Tim [Sheens] called me personally and really sold the club to me, both for the back end of this year and next season."

Explaining Wigan's decision, executive director Radlinski told the club's official website: "Everybody is aware of the incident that took place a few weeks ago. 

"Since Joel's suspension, conversations have taken place surrounding his long-term future at the club. Joel made a very remorseful statement and the discussions that have taken place since echo that.

"The images on that video will haunt Joel for a long time but we can't let that moment of madness detract from what a fantastic career he has had at the club. 

"Everyone has commented on the video but the hardest thing for me is that the video is not a true reflection of the man I know. After the video had emerged, he sent me a message apologising for the position that he put me in and said that whatever I decided, our friendship would remain intact.

"Joel is a good guy and somebody I care about. This has been a really difficult situation for all people concerned. Now it is time to move on. We thank Joel and wish him well with his future endeavours."

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Peter Hanson