TONY Smith has delivered a thinly veiled insult to Leigh-bound hooker Micky Higham.
Yesterday Centurions paid the Super League side £50,000 to secure Higham’s services and he could feature for Leigh against Featherstone at Blackpool this Sunday.
Higham, who was under contract with the Wolves to the end of the season but has rejoined his home-town club with immediate effect.
“I’m pleased it’s over,” Warrington coach Smith said. “It came as a shock to the team and staff and I’m glad to draw a line under it.
“I’m pleased we’ve got a great replacement in Brad and it gives you a lesson in that you don’t know everybody quite in the way you think you do.
“Sometimes you find out a bit more about people but overall I’m pleased it’s been resolved and we’ve got a crew here now that are 100 per cent committed to the cause and that’s what you want.”
Warrington have paid compensation to get hooker Brad Dwyer back from London Broncos for the rest of the season and signed him up for two more years to cover for Higham’s departure.
The Wolves initially allowed the 22-year-old home-grown player to spend the year with the relegated Broncos, believing they were well covered for the hooking role with veteran Micky Higham and newly signed Man of Steel Daryl Clark.
However, the sudden departure of Higham for a £50,000 fee to Leigh forced a sudden re-think by the Super League club.
After recalling Dwyer for last Friday’s Challenge Cup-tie at Dewsbury in the absence of an injured Clark, Warrington have now negotiated a permanent release from the Broncos and handed the player a new contract that runs to the end of 2017.
“We did everything legitimately,” Wolves head coach Tony Smith said. “We’ve paid compensation to London and rightfully so, even though he’s our player.
“We’ve found ourselves in a situation where we need him and we went through the front door and negotiated a legitimate compensation figure.
“We asked Brad if he wanted to be part of a new two-year deal with us and we’ve taken that up. He’s our second hooker for next season; he’s totally committed and that’s what we want.
“Brad has benefited from his London spell. He’s been playing week in, week out and most people at London would tell you that he’s been amongst their best performers each week.
“Brad has been part of our system and the players love him. He was outstanding against Dewsbury and Brad will get a lot of game time between now and the end of the season.”