Legend Johns to coach at Siddal

Australian Andrew Johns, rated by many pundits as the best player the game has ever seen, will hold a one-off coaching session at Siddal on Wednesday January 19.

Johns, the former Newcastle, New South Wales and Kangaroo half back, is visiting Chevinedge to help raise money for the families of former Siddal players Matthew Smith, who died earlier this year, and Jack Holmes, a 21 year old who was injured on military service in Afghanistan.

Johnny Lawless, the former Siddal player and coach who played as a professional for Halifax and Sheffield, arranged the event with the help of his former Ireland teammate Brian Carney.

Carney, now a media pundit, played with Johns – who now works as a freelance coaching consultant with several NRL clubs including Melbourne – at Newcastle and remains a close friend.

“As a club, we’re trying to do what we can to help and I emailed Brian to see if he could send us a bit of memorabilia,” said Lawless.

“He was in Australia at the time and he replied saying ‘how about a coaching session with Andrew Johns?

“That’s obviously better than anything he could have sent us and it’s a great gesture by both of them to give up their time to help a terrific cause.

“It’s a real once in a lifetime thing for everyone at the club.”

Johns, who is in England for a three-week stint on Warrington’s backroom staff, will hold a one hour session with one of Siddal’s junior sides at Park Lane High School, before returning to the clubhouse for a one hour question and answer session with Carney from 7.10pm.

Siddal also have 50 balls, that will be signed by Johns and Carney, for sale at £25 each, which will include a photograph taken with Johns.

Entry on the door will be £2 and further details are available from Siddal chairman Paul McCormack on 07950 383640.

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