LEIGH have effectively offered their coach Paul Rowley a job for life.
The former Centurions player turned coach has led Leigh to the top of the Kingstone Press Championship on the back of a club record 15 successive wins.
He has been rewarded by the club’s directors with a new rolling contract which extends his current deal by at least another three years.
“Effectively it’s a rolling contract that ties Paul to the club for as long as he wants,” said heady of rugby Derek Beaumont.
“It’s marvellous news and I reckon it to be our best ever signing. Paul has made rapid strides as a coach and is a highly motivated and driven individual with a thirst for knowledge and great desire to improve himself.
“He also conducts himself in an exemplary manner and is a great man manager of players, treating them individually as people and earning their respect. All the players I’ve met recently to sort out new contracts have all asked first of all about Paul’s plans for the future.”
Rowley said the new deal helps him map out the future of the club and he is thrilled to have received such a vote of confidence.
“I am delighted to have secured my immediate future at Leigh Centurions,” said Rowley. “I look forward to continuing on the journey we started in 2011. When I took over we had eight players and no backroom staff so to get to where we are at the present time is very pleasing. We recognise that we still have a long way to go but the Club is on an upward spiral and these are exciting times to be involved.
“I’d like to thank the board of directors, particularly Derek Beaumont for their backing and support. They have a clear vision about developing the club and it’s great to be part of that process.
“History shows that the most successful clubs are those that build on stability and continuity and that is something we are trying to develop at Leigh Centurions. We have a great culture here and I’d like to pay tribute to my coaching and backroom staff for the enormous part they have played in achieving that alongside the players.”
Rowley started and ended his illustrious playing career with the club, making a total of 198 appearances and scoring 70 tries between 1993 and 2007 and also played with distinction for Halifax and Huddersfield, representing England in the 2000 World Cup.
Since retiring as a player, he has been involved on the club’s coaching staff and succeeded Ian Millward as head coach at the end of the 2011 season. He guided Leigh to their Northern Rail Cup Final victory over Sheffield Eagles at The Shay last season and is regarded as one of the game’s most accomplished young coaches.
Beaumont added: “Paul has a great presence and is widely respected. He’s first and foremost an intensely proud Leigh born coach and has a great ambition for the club. Hopefully he can achieve those ambitions with ourselves.
“I rate him as the best coach outside Super League and one who has the ability to coach at the highest level. He has great attention to detail and leaves no stone unturned in his desire to make the club successful.
“He has a good eye for a player, not only for their ability on the field but their character and work ethic off the field. Paul is respected by the players, his staff and the spectators and this is a massive step forward for Leigh Centurions, securing Paul on a long-term deal.”