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Page last updated at 11:15 GMT, Thursday, 22 July 2010 12:15 UK

Royce Simmons appointed new St Helens head coach

Royce Simmons
Royce Simmons is the latest in a line of Aussies to take charge of St Helens

St Helens have appointed Wests Tigers assistant Royce Simmons as their new head coach from next season.

The 50-year-old has signed a two-year deal to replace Mick Potter, who is moving to Bradford at season's end.

"I'm going over there to do my best and I want to win some silverware," Simmons told BBC Radio Merseyside.

"The club has told me they want to do that and I want to do that. I'll do everything in my power to help a very good football side do that."

The former hooker is held in high regard from his playing days with Penrith Panthers and appeared for both New South Wales and Australia.

He has been assistant coach to Tim Sheens at Wests Tigers since 2003 but believes now is the time for him to step up.

"I'm very proud to be associated with a club with such great tradition and a club that's been so successful over so many years," Simmons continued.

"I knew how good the club was, as I've been over there and coached Hull back in the early 1990s. Even back then I knew how professional St Helens was.

"I got the chance to fly over for one day. It's a long trip for just one day, but I sat down with everyone and it didn't take too long realise how professional the club was.

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"The junior development was so well set up and structured with so many players coming through that system. The recruitment policy is very strong and they consistently win games.

"After talking to everyone and getting to know the people around the club it was quite obvious they're winners. They didn't have to sell too much to me after that."

St Helens chief executive Tony Colquitt says Simmons, who will be the fourth successive Aussie after Ian Millward, Daniel Anderson and Potter to hold the top job at Knowsley Road, has the necessary experience to take on a big job in Super League.

"I think his pedigree and his track record is second to none," said Colquitt. "I think Royce is a name well known across the sport on both sides of the world.

"We were looking for someone who has got experience with top-class athletes. You look at Royce's record working under Tim Sheens who's one of the greatest coaches knocking around at this moment in time.

"He's been exposed to systems and procedures at the highest level and Royce was an outstanding candidate."



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