South coach Michael Maguire, known as ‘Madge’, has played an important part in inspiring Luke to think about making the move into coaching.
“Madge, he wants me to be a coach after footy,” Luke said, in an extensive interview with the Sydney Morning Herald.
“He thinks I’ve got a lot up there. I’ve been told that by a few people. We’d be watching a bit of video and I’ll tell the coach to freeze that and ask him ‘why isn’t this guy doing this, this and that’.
“He’ll ask me to tell the group, but that’s when I get uncomfortable. I do a lot of video work, and it might be my job after I finish.”
Luke is also grateful for the way in which Maguire has inspired and helped him to calm down as a player.
One particularly memorable incident occurred in the 2011 Four Nations, when, whilst playing for New Zealand, Luke twisted the ankle of England stand-off Rangi Chase in what looked like a fairly disreputable tackle.
“I didn’t know Madge and he didn’t know me, but from the first phone call he said ‘I’ve dealt with a few boys like you’,” Luke added
“When that stuff with Rangi came out, he kicked my arse from then on. The first time I spoke to him was over the phone. He blew my ear off. He said ‘look mate, we’re going to change you’.
“I’d been hammered from family members for what I say in the past. I’ll say it and I’ll think it’s a joke but they won’t take it as a joke.
“I knew I needed to change. As soon as Madge stepped foot in Australia it’s been really good for me.”