Rugby League World Cup: Andy Gregory shares his pride of being involved in the tournament as he discusses the opening ceremony technical failure
Andy Gregory says it is always a great honour to represent his country no matter what capacity it is in.
The former Wigan scrum-half was one of the flag carriers in the Rugby League World Cup opening ceremony in Newcastle, and was on the pitch when the proceedings were disrupted by a technical fault.
Gregory states it was a proud moment to be involved, but knew immediately something had gone wrong when the music stopped.
He said: “I was born in Ince, I’m British, so to walk out with the flag is something special. I was so over the moon for my family to be there.
“It’s a great game that has given me so many memories, and on the day England went out and turned it on.
“It’s an honour whatever you are doing to walk out with either a Great Britain shirt on or carrying a flag. It still feels the same and you’re so proud.
“It’s just a great honour. Everyone knows how patriotic I am to my country.
“I had the England flag so I was at the front and the cameras were on us.
“We knew how long we had to stand there and all of a sudden the Kaiser Chiefs just got cut off and things started to go wrong.
“I was thinking to myself: ‘We should be going off now.’
“All I could hear was people whispering: ‘Greg, what is going on?’
“I didn’t have a clue, but there was this woman behind the camera telling me to stay where I was.
“We all stood there proud and put brave faces on, full credit to everyone, with our flags.
“All of sudden we were told to walk off in 10 seconds.
“I should’ve been there for three or four minutes but ended up there for 15.
“Things happen, and for me it was still just an honour just to be asked to carry the flag.”
The World Cup came to a close on Saturday afternoon, as Australia won the men’s competition.
Prior to that the Jillaroos won the women’s trophy, while England claimed the wheelchair prize on Friday night.