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Page last updated at 07:38 GMT, Saturday, 27 September 2008 08:38 UK

Noble looks forward with optimism

Brian Noble
Noble has promised more signings

Wigan coach Brian Noble believes the future is bright for the Warriors despite Friday's 18-14 defeat by Leeds in the Super League final eliminator.

"We're improving," said Noble. "Great strides have been made by the club in the last couple of seasons.

"As a club, we're pretty healthy and we're going in the right direction."

Wigan finished the regular season in fourth place, beating Bradford Bulls before registering a very impressive win over Catalans Dragons in Perpignan.

But they found defending champions Leeds too tough an obstacle at Headingley Carnegie.

"We had an absolute dig," said Noble. "We were good but we just couldn't quite find the composure to stay at the Leeds end. Had we stayed patient, the result might have been different.

"All 17 gave their all but, in the end, they just couldn't find the field position to score some points and basically we had too much defending to do.

"Mark Calderwood epitomised our challenge in relation to the amount of try-saving tackles he made."

The visitors battled to the end and were rewarded with late tries by Harrison Hansen and Iafeta Paleaaesina, but they could not add to their tally as Leeds secured a Grand Final against St Helens.

Now Noble faces a challenging time as he seeks to rebuild his squad following he departures of Trent Barrett, Micky Higham, Calderwood and Liam Colbon.

Parramatta hooker Mark Riddell is the club's only confirmed signing for 2009, but Noble revealed he would be joined by other new faces.

"We need to get the recruitment right," he added.

see also
Leeds v Wigan photos
27 Sep 08 |  Rugby League
Leeds 18-14 Wigan
26 Sep 08 |  Rugby League
Wigan 30-14 Bradford
12 Sep 08 |  Rugby League
Warrington clinch double signing
15 Sep 08 |  Warrington
Noble proud of Wigan performance
20 Sep 08 |  Rugby League
Catalans 26-50 Wigan
20 Sep 08 |  Rugby League

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