MEET the Warrington Wolves player feeling top of the class after graduating from university with a teaching degree.

Micky Higham said he was inspired to start the University of Central Lancashire course by his primary school teacher wife Kate who suggested he would be great in the role after he enjoyed helping out with young rugby teams.

After two years hard work the ceremony took place in July at the university in Preston much to the relief of the former England star.

He added: "It was quite overwhelming putting on my cap and gown and it was probably something I never expected to do.

"It was a special moment walking across the stage and I was proud of myself.

"Rugby has always been where my proudest achievements and successes are so to get something else was brilliant."

The part time course meant the hooker has been spending his Tuesday evenings at Wigan and Leigh College which he admits led to a few 'funny stares' on his first day.

He added: "The tutor made a comment about having someone famous in class and I looked around.

"It was a bit embarrassing but I've made some good friends there.

"It was a bit of a drag at times and sometimes Kate had to give me a kick up the backside to get me there but all the teachers were really good with me.

"It was difficult doing the course when all my focus was on the build-up to the Grand Final and then going to Australia for pre-season but I managed to knuckle down and catch up.

"I think my desire to succeed in rugby spurred me on to finish the course and the relief at the end was massive."

But as he has already made clear following the announcement of his three-month testimonial, the fans' favourite has no plans to hang up his boots just yet.

He added: “I was the wrong side of 30 so I had to start thinking about life after rugby but I still think I’ve got a few years in me yet.

"The gym I run with Woody (teammate Paul Wood) is going well and the teaching qualifications now just takes the pressure off a little bit.

"It’s a bit scary thinking something you have loved for so long could come to an end when you’ve got a mortgage and kids to feed so now it’s a weight off my shoulders."

The father-of-two says he hopes to combine his higher education qualifications with his gym and set up a business as a personal trainer but what kind of a teacher will he be?

“I’m not going to be strict”, he laughed. “I see myself as quite relaxed and getting that balance of enjoyment but also knuckling down and putting the hard work in.

“Hopefully I’ll be one of the teachers pupils like not one where they’re sticking notes on their back!”