October proved to be a busy month for Quins RL, as the off season restructuring hit full swing.
The month began brightly with the Quins collecting the Fair Play trophy at the annual Man of Steel awards. Unfortunately back-rower Henry Paul caused a few ripples in the press by picking up the trophy whilst intoxicated, although plenty of fans welcomed the ensuing publicity in the national media.
On the playing front Lamont Bryant made the step-up from the academy by being offered professional terms for next year, whilst fans favourite Joe Mbu signed a new contract, reward for some solid performances at the end of the season. Rising star forward Louis McCarthy-Scarsbrook also put pen to paper on a new three year deal ending speculation that he was heading in the direction of a big northern club. The squad was also boosted by the arrival of second-row Dwayne Parker from Castleford, in what will be his second spell with the club following a loan spell with London Broncos back in 2005.
Off the field the major shock came with the announced departure of Director of Player Development Tony Rea, following more than a decade with the club as a player, coach and administrator. An integral part of the set-up for so long Rea will be missed by many as a continuous link across the entire Super League area. Although reportedly leaving to pursue other coaching opportunities the speculation is that Rea’s role had become untenable given the recent restructuring within the club.
The month closed with chairman Ian Lenagan’s takeover of Wigan Warriors confirmed, and the announcement of a much needed new management structure. Long-time advisor, and former director of the club, Keith Hogg was appointed as the new chairman, whilst the highly rated Paul Brown of South London Storm became the new chief executive.
With the immediate future of the club settled fans will now be looking for further announcements of signings and initiatives for the forthcoming season.