Top four the main priority, says Rowley


Leigh head coach Paul Rowley admits he has to ‘reprogram’ his mind-set, as winning every game is not essential for Leigh under the current structure.

After losing just one match in the regular season, the Centurions ended the Qualifiers bottom of the division with just one win to their name, missing out on their goal of reaching Super League.

The downturn in results at the end of last season has forced Rowley to amend his plan of attack ahead of the 2016 season, revealing to that he will change his strategy to aid his team’s performances in the long term.

“I’ll have to reprogram the importance of winning every game,” said Rowley.

“Maybe we’ll have to sacrifice a game or two for the long-term good of the squad. That’s a change in my DNA really.

“The aim of sport is to win everything you take part in. Any system that promotes a focus where winning isn’t always in the best interest has a flaw in it, and I think we have that in Rugby League at the minute.”

Despite that, Rowley insists that the Centurions will go about their work in a similar manner to last year as they attempt to reach the big time.

“Every coach has a philosophy,” explained Rowley.

“The ones that stick by their philosophy and don’t copy are the ones that have longevity. You only get so far copying someone else because you’ve got to believe in and develop your own views. We’ll never sit rigid in what we do, we’ll always look to develop, but we certainly believe in our philosophy.”

Reni Maitua is another new signing at Leigh ahead of next season.
Reni Maitua is another new signing at Leigh ahead of next season.

With the second-week of pre-season training almost complete, Rowley has had the opportunity to cast his eye over several new additions, with Cory Paterson, Harrison Hansen and Dayne Weston amongst the new faces in the Centurions camp. So far, Rowley has been delighted with what he has seen.

“It’s been a good start,” he said.

“We’ve got a core of 15 that are training the house down to be fair, it’s been very good and I’m happy.”

“Our training is very similar, it’s just fine-tuned really. We’re looking to make improvements on culture and professionalism, which is a natural progression with the club going full-time last year. The personnel we’ve brought in have come from good cultures and they’ve already made subtle improvements.”

One man who isn’t currently in training is Rangi Chase, as Leigh’s director of rugby Derek Beaumont continues his pursuit of the England international’s signature.

Mystery surrounds the future of the halfback, who is thought to be in New Zealand after posting a picture on Instagram with his family yesterday.

Sibling love ❤️ ✊?

A photo posted by RChase (@rangichase06) on

Rowley remained tight-lipped when questioned about Chase, although he did reveal that he is keen on bringing one or two new recruits into his squad before the start of the season.

“I’m just reading everything you guys put out,” he said.

“I’m just an interested spectator. I don’t get involved in any of that, I have a group of lads that need training and that is my focus.”