Wigan rugby league legend Andy Gregory excited to take charge of his first game as St Patricks coach

Wigan rugby league legend Andy Gregory can’t hide his excitement about taking charge of his first game as St Patrick’s coach this weekend in the opening round of the Challenge Cup.

Friday, 14th January 2022, 4:55 am
Andy Gregory takes charge of his first game as St Pats coach in the Challenge Cup (credit: Bob Martin/Allsport)

The seven-time winner of the competition wants the focus to be on the club and not him when they travel to Rochdale Mayfield on Saturday (2.15pm), with game being streamed live by the Sportsman.

Despite having a range of different job offers over the years, Gregory has revealed this is the only role that interested him.

He said: “I’ve been asked to sign for a couple of professional clubs, and I never wanted to do it, but St Pat’s is my hometown club and is the place where I started, so I wanted to give something back.

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“To be honest, it’s my wife who really convinced me to go back coaching, and I only wanted to do it here. I must admit I’m really loving it and the team spirit is really good. I’m made up and absolutely loving it.

“I’m looking forward to the Challenge Cup, but it’s not about Andy Greg, it’s about Wigan St Pat’s. I know there’s going to be a lot of focus on me, but I just want to get the club where it belongs.

“My aim is to send the best 13 players out against Rochdale Mayfield. It won’t be easy, they’re a good outfit, but we’ve got some tough lads in our squad.”

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Gregory says the Challenge Cup is something he always looks forward to due to the incredible success he’s enjoyed in it over the years.

“It will be a difficult game at the weekend, but the competition is special to me because I’ve been there, and I’ve walked out at Wembley for Wigan and Widnes as well as Great Britain, so I’m proud of my record,” he said.

“I hope we put up a good performance and get through to the next round.

“We will certainly have a go, performing to the best of our ability, and see where we go from there.

“It’ll be a learning process, they’ve had a couple of bad seasons, and I want to get them back where they belong. They’re winners just like I’ve always been.”

Gregory has enjoyed working with the squad so far during his time back at the club and is keen to bring success.

“We’ve got a good squad of players and we are just looking ahead,” he said.

“We’re just enjoying things at the moment, but we haven’t played a game yet, so we’ll just have to wait to see what happens during the season.

“They’re enthusiastic and just want to get out there to play for the club. I’ve always been a winner, and that won’t change, and that’s what I want the mentality to be because St Pat’s is a world-famous club that is known all over.

“I want a strong second team here, because that’ll mean we’ll have a strong first team.

“There’ll be no favourites in my squad, we want the two teams competing week in week out.

“I can’t ask any more of the lads, they’ve all been great to me. If the coaching staff and the committee are giving 100 per cent then that’s all I want from the players.

“I will contribute anyway I can to anybody associated to the club anyway I can. I am the most down to earth lad you will ever meet, I keep myself to myself, and I enjoy my life.

“All I want is for us to get some games under our belt and get the lads on the field, because we can all talk a good but it’s about what we do in the 80 minutes.”

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