South Wales Scorpions’ Head Coach and Wales Rugby League’s Head of Football Anthony Seibold has won the Co-operative Championship 1 Coach of the Year award.
He beat off the challenges of his peers from Workington Town and Blackpool Panthers to take home the trophy after leading the Scorpions to the play-offs in their very first season, finishing sixth in the league.
The Scorpions surprised many of their critics this season by beating a lot of big name sides including a 22-20 win over Workington on the opening day of the season and the 42-24 destruction of this week’s Championship 1 finalists Oldham at their ground, both being ex-Super League clubs. Plus they put 70-points on both Gateshead Thunder and London Skolars, which helped them up to 102 tries in their debut season.
“I’m honoured to win the award and to be recognised by my fellow coaches,” said Seibold who had the trophy presented to him at the Co-operative Championships awards ceremony on Tuesday night by Michelle Keegan, who plays Tina McIntyre in Coronation Street.
“We’ve had an excellent season in South Wales and we’ve done it with a predominantly Welsh side – we fielded 24 born and bred Welsh players during 2010.
“We’re now preparing for the 2011 season. We’re in the process of re-signing many of our players from this season, we’re holding open trials in December for new players to boost our existing squad plus we have players coming through the academy system. It’s a pleasing time to be involved in Rugby League here in South Wales.”
Scorpions chairman Phil Davies said: “Seibs winning the award is really great news. We made the right decision in appointing him and he has done an outstanding job for us. Our team of Welsh youngsters have shocked a few of the older clubs this season and I’m sure that with his expertise, we can strengthen our squad and do the same next year. Well done again to Anthony and an additional well done to our top try scorer Steve Parry for being nominated for Young Player of the Year.”
Parry, who scored 19 tries in 20 games for the Scorpions this season, shrugged off missing out on the Young Player of the Year award to Workington’s Jarrad Stack.
“I’ve had a really good season and I’ve got Wales to look forward to now as we’ve big games coming up in Wrexham and Neath,” he said. “It was just good to be nominated and to be able to attend the awards ceremony.”
Highlights from the ceremony in Manchester, which including more comments from Seibold can by seen on Sky Sports’ magazine show “Boots N All” tonight (Wednesday) at 6pm and 8pm and again tomorrow (Thursday) at 7.30am, 1pm and 4pm.
Parry and Seibold are both involved in the Wales squad and their big game in Neath is on Sunday 17th October when Wales take on Ireland in the Alitalia European Cup. Tickets can be bought by going to www.scorpionsrl.com or by calling 01656 863896.