Joel Tomkins rejoins Wigan

  • Last Updated: June 18 2014, 21:46 BST

Wigan have re-signed England rugby union international Joel Tomkins.

Joel Tomkins: Back at Wigan on a four-and-a-half year contract
Joel Tomkins: Back at Wigan on a four-and-a-half year contract

The 27-year-old Wigan-born centre or second rower left the Warriors for Saracens three years ago but has rejoined them with immediate effect and was unveiled at half-time during Wigan's First Utility Super League match against Widnes at the DW Stadium on Wednesday night.

Wigan have paid an undisclosed fee for the dual-code international, whose younger brother Sam left Wigan at the end of last season for New Zealand Warriors.

Tomkins, who was a tryscorer in the Warriors' 2011 Challenge Cup final win over Leeds, received a rapturous welcome from the crowd and said: "I'm overwhelmed by this.

"I just can't wait to get stuck into training with the lads and start playing here again

"The timing felt right. This is the club I love."

Joel Tomkins "After a long thought-out process and at this stage in my life, I realised that the timing was right to come home. I am very grateful to Wigan Warriors for taking me back to the best rugby club in the world."
Joel Tomkins

Tomkins made four appearances for England's rugby league team before switching codes and his return will be a boost for Steve McNamara ahead of the end-of-season Four Nations Series.

He came through Wigan's youth system to make 117 appearances for the senior team from 2005 up to his transfer in 2011, scoring 40 tries.

Tomkins, who made three appearances for his country in rugby union, is currently recovering from a bulging disc in his back but is expected to be available in around four weeks.

Wigan coach Shaun Wane said: "To see Joel Tomkins come back to us demonstrates the strength of the culture we have here at Wigan and shows that the grass isn't always greener elsewhere.

"His return is a clear indication of the strength of our sport and the pleasures of playing it and I would sincerely like to thank (rugby general manager) Kris Radlinski and (chairman) Ian Lenagan for bringing back one of the best rugby players in the world."