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Smith lure key to Agar decision
AN opportunity to work alongside Tony Smith was too big a lure for Richard Agar to turn down a number two role at Warrington Wolves.
Agar has held head coach positions in Super League since 2006 when he took over at Hull FC, before moving to Wakefield and also coaching France in the 2013 World Cup.
But the former Featherstone Rovers player says it took an offer from a top club to convince him to step into an assistant job.
“There are probably not too many clubs in the competition where I would have been happy to go and not be in charge,” he said.
“I’ve been a head coach and I coached an international team, but I’m more than happy, I’m thrilled, it’s a job that’s important. I feel what the club can offer working under Tony is something that may really enhance my development as a coach.
“It’s an opportunity to develop at a strong club in a strong environment with a coach who is arguably the most successful in the game here for the last decade.”
His relationship with Smith is well-documented and a position arising at Wolves was well-timed for Agar after a difficult decision to leave Wakefield.
“Giving my job up when I had two years left on my contract put a fair amount of uncertainty about where I would head next and what roles would be on offer,” he added.
“I felt it would give me enough time to be in the market and in the mix if jobs did come around and I feel this one is right. It’s probably no secret we’ve got a long-standing friendship that dates back over 10 years.
“Everyone has people in the game they turn to for advice and I’ve got two or three really close people who I trust and Tony is one of them. He’s had a strong influence on me from a coaching perspective.”
Their friendship dates back to Agar’s time at York City Knights when then Leeds coach Smith invited him out to Parramatta Eels, coached by Tony’s brother Brian.
“I spent some time there when I was a young coach making my way in the game off my own back, seeing how some of the clubs in the NRL operated,” explained Agar, who will take some time off before joining Wolves in November.
“I’m going over to Australia to watch some rugby and I’m anticipating coaching France depending on the schedule.
“Certainly over the past month Warrington have found a bit of form and got some injuries back on board, they’re timing their run at the right time and look threatening towards the top four.
“I’ll keep a respectful distance while watching games to get myself prepared for going in there. They’ve still got a job to do and I hope it goes well for them.
“I’ll get a holiday, take the kids away and find a place to live near Warrington.”
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