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Leeds Rhinos

2017 Super League Champions

Leuluai heads to Wolves after a decade at the Rhinos

20th October 2017 | 1:00 pm

By Phil Daly

After a decade at Leeds Rhinos, Kylie Leuluai will leave the club this close season to take up a new position with Betfred Super League rivals Warrington Wolves.

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After a decade at Leeds Rhinos, Kylie Leuluai will leave the club this close season to take up a new position with Betfred Super League rivals Warrington Wolves.

Leuluai originally joined the Rhinos in 2007 from Manly Sea Eagles and enjoyed an incredible period of success at the club winning six Super League Grand Finals, two Challenge Cups, two World Club Challenges and two League Leaders Shields culminating in his final appearance in the 2015 Grand Final when the Rhinos secured a historic treble.

Leuluai, who is the most successful overseas player in the club’s history, has spent the last two years as the Rhinos Player Welfare Manager, working with the squad on matters away from rugby such as education and training for life after the game.

He will now join Warrington Wolves as the club’s head of rugby operations with player welfare part of his role at Warrington as well as working with the first grade team on all administrative, logistical and operational aspects, and integration with the youth grades.

Leuluai’s playing career started in Australia representing Wests Tigers, Sydney Roosters, Parramatta Eels and Manly Sea Eagles in the NRL.

On joining the Warrington club Leuluai said: “For me, going to a new club is always an exciting prospect. I’ve been at seven different clubs over my career and I’ve loved the whole experience; different structures meeting new people, achieving objectives, and for me that’s an exciting challenge. Another thing that’s appealing at Warrington is the staff they have there, they all my age, it’s like a new generation coming in. I’ve played against the likes of Jon Clarke, Richard Mathers, Andrew Henderson, Lee Briers and Karl Fitzpatrick, and played alongside Steve Price back in Australia.

“All I will try to do is add value to the club. I’m hoping to add to the culture from first grade to the youth department and pass on the knowledge that has helped me to achieve success. From the welfare perspective, I can relate to the players as I’ve been there and done that. I know what it takes to overcome the challenges they face, be that form or injury, and I will be able to help in those areas.”

Head coach Steve Price added: “I played with Kylie back in 1999 at Balmain. He was always hardworking and diligent in his preparation and I saw that follow through into his playing style over at Leeds where he was very successful. He’s been on-board with the welfare at Leeds since retiring from playing and I feel he can bring that experience with him and contribute a lot to the culture within the club, instilling high standards across the board. He will be a great asset to all performance staff members and to what we are looking to build here at Warrington Wolves.”

Karl Fitzpatrick, Wolves’ chief executive, said: “Kylie is a winner with outstanding attributes. He’s compassionate, intelligent and knows what it takes to get success. These attributes make him a perfect fit for this role. He’s going to be a great support to Steve and will enhance the club culture enormously.

“As well as providing welfare support, Kylie will lead on all Rugby operational matters that includes being the conduit between first team and youth grade raising the professionalism across the board.”

Leeds Rhinos Chief Executive Gary Hetherington commented, “On behalf of everyone associated with Leeds Rhinos, I would like to thank Kylie Leuluai for his outstanding service to the club for the past decade. I am pleased he has secured a major role in the game for the next move of his career and I am sure he will do a superb job with Warrington and the new role is a great fit for him and his family. Kylie leaves with our best wishes and he will always remain a friend of the Rhinos.”