ADRIAN LAM SIGNS THREE-YEAR CONTRACT EXTENSION

Leigh Leopards are delighted to confirm that head coach Adrian Lam has signed a new three-year contract with the Club up until the end of the 2027 season.

Currently in his third season at the Leopards Den, after a record-breaking treble-winning promotion season in 2022, the Betfred Challenge Cup win and fifth place Betfred Super League finish in 2023 earned him the coveted accolade as Super League Coach of the Year for the second time in four years.

Leigh Leopards owner Derek Beaumont said: “I am delighted to be able to secure Adrian’s services further and have him lead the team. He has been fantastic for the club and has achieved more than was asked of him at this stage of our plan.

“We have a fantastic relationship which extends to Jukesy (CEO Neil Jukes) and Chezy (Head of Rugby Chris Chester) which is a great team I want to keep together.

“Despite our difficult start to the season Adrian has demonstrated how good he is and how he trusts his instincts and believes in his processes. He has had to adapt key plays and positions as he has continually had numerous players injured, something that is part of the game.

“Despite this we have been in the battle and, as he stated to me, we will learn to win big games this way, then when we get everyone back, we will be even better for it.

“The performance against Catalans and then Salford clearly shows that and with the draw against Castleford in between we are finding some form, unbeaten in our last three outings as we hit the road for five games.

“We have continually both been confident Adrian’s future would be at the club as Adrian had no desire to leave. He has always been honest with me throughout his time at the club.

“We purposely postponed any distractions until after the Salford game and my short break in France to get to a space where we have the weekend without a game, and we could focus on our agreement.

“It’s important to the club and the team that is now done, and everyone knows what the future holds.”

Adrian Lam said: “I promised you a five-year plan and this extension shows that I’m as committed to this club now as I was in game one in the Championship. The journey I’ve been on with these boys has been absolutely amazing.

“Representing this club is a massive, massive honour. When I came here, I knew this club was a sleeping giant and it didn’t belong in the Championship. To get back into Super League and also bring the Challenge Cup to Leigh for the first time in over fifty years was incredible.

“But that was only part of the journey, it wasn’t the destination. There’s so much more I want to bring to this club for the fans because our fans are incredible. We’ve had a tough start to this season with ups and downs and players not being in games due to injury, but the one consistent has been you, the fans.

“You’ll never ever understand because words can’t do justice to it, just how much your support means to me, as you are the heartbeat of our club and I care about every single one of you.

“I know there’s been a lot of talk about my future in recent weeks but that was all it was, outside noise. To me, Leigh has become home and the Leythers my people, so I’m extremely grateful that Derek, Neil and Chezy want to carry on this journey with me. Thank you.”

Leopards Head of Rugby Chris Chester said: “I’m delighted that Adrian has agreed a three-year deal with the club. He’s an integral part of the success the club has enjoyed over the last two years.

“It’s not just the success on the field but the incredible culture at Leigh Leopards is massively down to his philosophies as a coach. He gets the best out of players because they want to represent him and the town as best they can.

“Me and Adrian have a brilliant relationship and I’m really looking forward to continuing the partnership for many more years.”

In his first season Leigh won promotion from the Betfred Championship after losing only one league game in the regular season, lifting the League Leaders Shield, and then winning the Promotion Final against Batley Bulldogs. They also won the AB Sundecks 1895 Cup after defeating Featherstone Rovers 30-16 in the final at Tottenham.

In all the then Centurions won 32 of their 34 games, losing only twice, scoring 1,512 points, and conceding only 290. They ended the season with a winning run of 25 games in all competitions. They scored 50 points or more in a game on 16 occasions and conceded only 6 points or less on 16 occasions.

In 2023 the rebranded Leopards lifted the Challenge Cup for only the third time in the Club’s history after a 17-16 golden point extra-time victory over Hull KR at Wembley. After then leading the Leopards to a fifth-place finish and qualifying for the Super League play-offs for the first time, Adrian Lam was named as Super League Coach of the Year.

Adrian Lam, 53, has been an assistant coach to Mal Meninga for World Champions Australia since 2016 and prior to joining Leigh, was head coach to Wigan Warriors for three seasons. He was also voted Betfred Super League Coach of the Year in 2020 after Wigan lifted the League Leaders Shield but lost to St Helens in a dramatic grand final.

Born in Papua New Guinea, he spent much of his early life in Queensland. As a skilful and inventive halfback also noted for his defensive qualities, he made his NRL first grade debut with Eastern Suburbs (later renamed Sydney Roosters) in 1994 and went on to play 146 games over seven seasons for the Roosters. He then moved to the UK, playing 119 games in four seasons with Wigan before commencing his coaching career by taking charge of Wigan’s academy in 2005.

In a stellar playing career, he made 14 State of Origin appearances for Queensland, becoming state captain and captained Papua New Guinea in both the 1995 and 2000 World Cup competitions. He also captained Rest of the World against Australia in 1997. He has been on the coaching staff at Cronulla, St George Illawarra and the Roosters and was head coach to Papua New Guinea in both the 2008 and 2013 World Cups.

Adrian Lam is sponsored by Paul Lester Transport Ltd.

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