Huddersfield star Olly Russell has joined the coaching staff at Oldham St Annes as a way of saying thank you to the place where his rugby league journey began.
The half-back started at St Annes as a six-year-old and didn’t look back. He played his way through the age groups before being picked up by Wigan at scholarship level. Russell then moved to Huddersfield during his academy days.
Fast forward 18 years and he’s now made more than 50 appearances for Huddersfield in Super League.
Russell has now joined the coaching staff of the open age team as a way of giving back to where it all started.
“I’d never really left because I’ve always gone watching St Annes,” Russell told Love Rugby League. “One of my best mates still plays there now who I played with when I was younger so I always go watching him.
“One of the coaches asked me if I fancy helping out so I said ‘why not?’. It’s something new for me so I said I’ll give it a go.”
Paul Green and Mick Cashin are pleased to announce Neil ' chez' Cherryholme former Championship player and Oliver Russell current Huddersfield Giants player and former saints youth player onto the coaching team for this year 🏉💚💛 pic.twitter.com/wUwCQQrbh5
— The Saint (@OldhamStAnnes) December 2, 2022
Olly Russell: I’ll be forever grateful to Oldham St Annes
Russell might be a Super League regular now, but he’s remained grounded all the way and now wants to help his local club achieve success.
“The main reason I’m doing it is to give back to the club where I played all my amateur career,” he said.
“If it wasn’t for that club, then I wouldn’t be where I am today.
“I’m not getting paid for it or anything. I’m just doing it off my own back and giving back to the club that put me in the good position that I’m in today.”
Russell will don the number 23 jersey for Huddersfield in 2023.