Confusion clouds Wighton's milestone
Raiders fullback Jack Wighton will celebrate NRL game number 100 on Saturday against the Warriors, but unfortunately he won't have his mother at GIO Stadium to cheer him on because she is convinced the milestone will be achieved next week.
Several websites suggest the 24-year-old has only played 98 games, but the official 2017 NRL Season Guide clearly proves that Wighton is set to reach triple figures on Easter Saturday; not next Friday as his mother has been led to believe.
"I'm still arguing with mum [because] she believes it's next weekend even though I told her it's this weekend, so they're coming next weekend," Wighton said.
"She won't believe me. I tried telling her it's this weekend but she's set on coming next weekend so I'll celebrate then, I guess."
Uncertainty aside, Wighton is looking forward to raising the bat on what should be a special night in the nation's capital.
"I'm very happy to be playing my 100th game for the club," he said.
"I think as a footballer it's always a great milestone, and to do it for the one team – I'm happy about that also. It means a lot.
"It's come quickly. The first few years was dragging out a fair bit [because] I had a few injuries but with a few pre-seasons under my belt I think I'm coping a bit better and recovering through the weeks."
One of the biggest changes for Wighton has been his permanent switch to the No.1 jersey after spending the first three years of his NRL career filling a variety of roles in the backline.
Wighton has improved out of sight since making the switch to fullback in 2015, with the Country representative adding a deft passing game to his powerful carries coming out of trouble.
"I love it because I've finally got something set. I spent most of my years moving from centre, wing, halves, but now I've got one position and I really know what I've got to work on so it helps," he said.
"Coming into grade and not knowing what position I was going to play week-to-week [was tough]. I was grateful that I was getting a spot, but it was definitely a lot harder to work on the little things that I needed to do. Now I'm set at fullback, it's been great."