Leigh appoint new Chairman

Leigh Centurions today appointed local businessman Arthur Thomas as their new chairman.

Thomas, who has previously served on the boards at Wigan Warriors and St Helens, takes over from honorary chairman Andy Burnham, the local MP, who stood down recently for personal reasons.

The National League One club, relegated from the engage Super League at the end of 2005, have already appointed a new football manager in Australian Darren Shaw with England international Paul Rowley the first team coach.

Thomas, who has been out of the game for two years since leaving St Helens, joins Phil Coffey, Keith Freer, Tommy Coleman, Steve Grainey and his son, Darren Thomas, on the board.

Thomas, aged 63, said:"I love Rugby League and have been lucky to be involved at both Wigan and St Helens at a time when they won every trophy available.
"I stood down at Saints because I went into semi-retirement in business and thought the time was right to go. But the Leigh directors have been asking me for some time to get back involved and I must admit I have missed the buzz of the game.

"I have lived in the town since marrying my wife Sylvia, who is a Leigh girl, 37 years ago and all my three children are Leigh-thers. I feel I owe the club something and will relish the challenge."

Allan Rowley, the Centurions Acting Chief Executive, said:"I've worked with Arthur at both Wigan and St Helens and he is one of the most respected administrators in the game.

"We are delighted he has agreed to join us and his vast experience and business acumen can only help the club move in a forward direction and help us attain our goals."

Leigh also expect to announce the recruitment of Alf Davies, the ex Leeds Rhinos Chief Executive and former Bolton Wanderers official in the near future.
Thomas added:"Alf is now a part-time consultant with the Rugby Football League but should be with us in a senior position by April and his experience will be invaluable."

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