Legendary rugby league player and coach Mike Gregory features in our Hall of Heroes...

Warrington Guardian:

MIKE Gregory earned respect in both hemispheres for his achievements as a player and coach as well as for the way he battled the progressively debilitating illness that eventually took his life at the age of 43 in November, 2007.

Wolves Hall of Fame inductee Gregory served Warrington and Great Britain with distinction as a player and captain, before taking on club and international coaching roles with St Helens, Wigan and Great Britain Academy.

He made a name for himself in home-town Wigan before lighting up the radar of Warrington supporters.

Lancashire youth representative Gregory, a former ball boy at Wigan Athletic Football Club, played for Wigan St Patricks under 17s and 19s, captaining both sides which won every trophy available to them before signing professional for Warrington on June 8, 1982.

Warrington Guardian:

His back-row quality was a major asset as Wire reached eight cup finals in the first eight of his 12 seasons at Wilderspool Stadium.

Gregory was captain of the team for two of those shots at glory and his leadership qualities were highly valued at international level too.

Warrington Guardian:

He became only the second Warrington player to captain the GB side and his 20 international appearances made him the club's most capped player at the time.

He was a full-time professional and one of the new breed of forwards, committed, smart, mobile, fast, strong, tackled like a Trojan and possessed good ball distribution skills.

Warrington Guardian:

In Warrington he became known as Captain Marvel for the way he led by example and for inspiring others around him.

Only 10 matches into his pro career he joined skipper Ken Kelly and company in lifting the Lancashire Cup against St Helens at Wigan’s old Central Park ground in 1983.

Gregory was in the No13 shirt when Warrington defied the challenge of the champions to convincingly defeat Halifax in the 1986 Premiership Trophy Final at Elland Road.

He was a British Coal Nines tournament winner in 1988 when Warrington defeated Rest of the World in the final at Central Park.

Warrington Guardian: Battle-scarred Mike Gregory after winning the Britsh Coal Nines at Wigan for Warrington

Another proud club moment for Gregory was his first trophy success as captain of the team, which came in the Lancashire Cup against Oldham at Knowsley Road in 1989.

And at Wembley he led out Warrington, scored one try and set up another for Dave Lyon when Wire appeared in the Challenge Cup final against Wigan in 1990.

Warrington Guardian:

Warrington Guardian:

His Test debut was memorable. Gregory scored two tries in a record defeat of France at Headingley and no-one will ever forget, on his first tour in 1988, the 75-metre try he scored against Australia that led to a GB victory in the third Test at Sydney Football Stadium.

He went on to skipper his country in the 2-1 series defeat of New Zealand in 1989 and was captain for the following year's tour, when the Lions again defeated the Kiwis 2-1.

Warrington Guardian: Mike Gregory, Great Britain and Warrington star

All of the success then appeared to take its toll as numerous injuries left him only being able to take to the field 27 times in his final four years with Warrington.

After 222 appearances for the club, Gregory finished his playing days with Salford before switching to coaching.

He was assistant coach at Saints in the Shaun McRae era 1996-98, while illness forced him out of his job as head coach at Wigan in 2004 - but he never gave up, writing his autobiography Biting Back and continuing to be involved in campaign work.

Former Wolves coach Paul Cullen was a teammate of Gregory’s for 12 years and they remained firm friends after their playing days.

In a tribute reflecting on Gregory’s Warrington career, Cullen said: "Mike had a very soft spot for Warrington and he took this club and this town to his heart. He will be remembered for it.

"He's up there with the very best that have ever worn the primrose and blue, not only for his on-field performance but for his conduct off it.

"He was a real ambassador, an absolute gentleman and he gave everything he possibly could to this club.”

Warrington Guardian:

Warrington Guardian:

Warrington Guardian:

Warrington Guardian: