Retaining the young players coming through the ranks is imperative for any club and for the Raiders – amid continued speculation – they have announced some good news, re-signing talented utility back Jack Wighton until the end of 2016.
Ahead of the 2014 pre-season, the Raiders are gearing up for what they hope is a better year and retaining Jack Wighton – an exciting young talent – is just the start of their preparation.
For Wighton, who knows Canberra well having come through the ranks, he is excited to remain a part of the club moving forward for the long-term.
“Yeah, I’m very stoked to be signed here again,” said Wighton.
“Coming back yesterday from the break and seeing everyone’s faces, it helped me make the decision.
“There’s a big change in the club and I think there’s an exciting year coming along.”
For any young player – or any player for that matter – their family plays a big role in the decision they make and for Wighton, this was no different.
“Yeah, definitely. I always talk to my family,” says Wighton.
“I gave Pop a ring and he had a few words to say and the Raiders started my career as they remained loyal so I had a chat with him and he said, yeah, stick by them and show some loyalty back.
“I made the decision to stay around and also, we’ve got a good bunch of blokes here.”
Wighton has re-signed hot on the heels of fellow youngster Edrick Lee doing the same and moving forward, with the two having played alongside each other before, Wighton looks forward to the chance to keep doing so.
“It’s the start of a new – we’re always using the word culture – where we’re starting a culture, especially with all the young boys,” said Wighton.
“Me and Eddie [Edrick Lee] are good mates, so hopefully a few of the other young boys jump on board and we can build something great this year.”
With the ability to cover multiple positions across the backline – namely centre, wing and five-eighth – Wighton quite simply will play where he is required.
“I’m happy to go with wherever the coach puts me,” said Wighton.
A talented player, Wighton has representative duties to his name – both in junior footy and most recently, for the Country Origin side – ones that he hopes he can build upon moving forward.
“Yeah, definitely. That’s always been the dream since I’ve been little, so I got that little taste of it this year and I can’t wait,” said Wighton.
“I’ll try and go that next step further.”