St Helens forward Louis McCarthy-Scarsbrook says he can’t wait to face his former master in Brian McDermott on Saturday.
McCarthy-Scarsbrook was McDermott’s apprentice at Harelquins for four and a half seasons, and says that having a coach who played in that position in Super League encouraged him to improve his performances.
He said: “I owe it to Brian where I am today. He took me under his wing and he taught me the ways how to play and what not to do.
“When the coach has played in your position at the highest level, you are going to listen to every word he says about that position.”
McCarthy-Scarsbrook made his debut for London Broncos, as they were known then, under the coaching leadership of Tony Rea in 2005. Since then he made nearly 100 appearances for the London-based club and made his England debut against Wales in 2008. He says most of that is thanks to McDermott, who swapped London for Leeds during the winter.
He said: “I think he did help me a long my way in my career. How he did that is between me and him. He sat me down many times in conversation, some good and some bad, and sometimes he blew my knee caps off but that had to be done.”
St Helens will hope to get their season back on track against Leeds after losing their opening two home games to Warrignton and Harlequins. McCarthy-Scarsbrook is hopeful to return after missing out facing his old club on Friday due to a shoulder injury.
He said: “Headingley is a tough place to go to, but if the team play well and we don’t come in at half time 18-0 down than will be a bonus. However if we play well and stick to the game plan Royce [Simmons] gives us, hopefully we will come away with the two points. It would be nice as well against my old coach.”