Tour defeat forgotten by Great Britain ahead of first Test, insists Gareth Widdop

Great Britain player Gareth Widdop, during a team training session.  Photo: Brett Phibbs / /
Great Britain player Gareth Widdop, during a team training session. Photo: Brett Phibbs / /
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Great Britain stand-off Gareth Widdop says the team have put their opening tour defeat behind them and were ready to take on New Zealand.

The tourists have moved on from Hamilton, where they suffered a surprise 14-6 defeat by a Tongan Invitational XIII, and are gearing up for back-to-back Tests with the Kiwis, the first one of which was in the early hours of this morning at Eden Park in Auckland.

“It’s been a great week,” Widdop said. “We reviewed last week’s game and moved on.

“We looked at areas where we did well and areas where we need to improve – we will certainly be better for last week’s game.”

Hull FC’s Jake Connor, who was not born the last time the Lions won a Test match in New Zealand in 1992, said the mood in the camp quickly lifted after their disappointing performance at Waikato Stadium.

“It was just like any loss really but the day after the mood was fine,” he said. “Wayne picked us all back up.

“It’s not the end of the world, we’ve still got three games left. We’ve got a chance to put it right.

“We have to start completing our sets in good spots, playing in the pocket and having a few more shots with good ball, put a few more plays on.”

This morning’s Test is part of a triple header at Eden Park, sandwiched between Oceania Cup matches between Samoa and Fiji and Australia against Tonga.

Former Wigan hooker Logan Tomkins has joined Championship club Widnes following his departure from Grand Final runners-up Salford.

The 27-year-old hooker, the youngest of the three Tomkins brothers who all began their Super League careers with Wigan, becomes the most high-profile signing for coach Tim Sheens.

Tomkins, whose last match for Salford was in their Grand Final defeat by St Helens earlier this month, has signed a 12-month deal with Widnes, where he enjoyed a spell on dual registration in 2011.

Tomkins said: “I’m delighted to be joining Widnes Vikings.

“The team we’re putting together is exciting, and with a coach like Tim coming in as well, it’s something I’m really looking forward to.”