Centurions coaching staff to go full-time

Simon Finnigan will become a full-time player welfare officer at Leigh in 2015
Simon Finnigan will become a full-time player welfare officer at Leigh in 2015

THREE of Leigh’s coaching team will go full-time later in the year.

Assistant coach Neil Jukes, 38, has signed a three-year full-time contract and reserve team coach Paul Anderson, 37, has been handed a two-year full-time deal.

Simon Finnigan, 32, has also been secured on a two-year full-time contract in the coaching team with a specific role of player welfare officer. All three will go full-time from December.

Leigh head of rugby Derek Beaumont said: “Further to Paul Rowley recently signing a new contract with the club these appointments will further our progression towards achieving our ambition of becoming a Super League side. Paul and I are delighted to have secured the services of Neil, Paul and Simon.

“Neil has proven himself beyond doubt since taking up a full-time role during last year.

“His commitment to advancing his career in coaching saw him depart a successful job and take a considerable reduction in his income.

“I am delighted that it has paid dividends for him and that we are able to reward him with a secure three-year contract on improved terms with realistic achievable bonuses.

“He is a strong support for Paul and is very knowledgeable. Paul has assembled himself a great backroom staff and was very clear on how he wanted to progress that within the full-time structure and I am delighted to support that and to have secured those individuals in their pivotal roles.

“I am particularly pleased for Paul and Simon, who have both made similar sacrifices to prove themselves, to give them a chance of progressing in the game.

“Paul has done a fantastic job with our reserve grade, seeing a number of the players making first grade last season and this season, which is proof of his ability.

“Simon has been a great addition this season and has made it impossible not to include him in our structure.

“He has voluntarily this season taken on the player welfare role to demonstrate to me the value of that and I have seen clear benefits to justify filling that position with him.

“He has a great personality and knowledge of the game. He is respected amongst players within Super League which is helpful when targeting prospects and he has had a clear impact on our back rowers at the club.”