LEE Mitchell says he feels honoured to be head coach of Warrington Wolves Reserves this year.

The 31-year-old, who turned professional with The Wire and made his Super League debut as a back-rower in 2008, sees the move as being the perfect transition for him from player to coaching.

It is a role that fits in well with his position as a full-time community coach with the Warrington Wolves Foundation.

“It’s a great step-up for me," said Mitchell, whose playing career progressed at Leigh Centurions, Harlequins, Castleford Tigers, Whitehaven Warriors, Batley Bulldogs and Rochdale Hornets.

“It works really well.

“With my day job with the Foundation, we’re now moved over to Padgate so we’re all together in the offices over there, linking everything rugby league related from the juniors in the community clubs up to the reserves and first grade.

“The puzzle pieces have all come together for this to work.

“I’m very honoured to get the role, because it’s good learning for me.

“Getting into coaching is what I wanted to do once I finish playing.

“So this is the first steps for me to kick on with that.

“I think I’d mentioned that I’d be interested, and then Pricey (Wolves head coach Steve Price) rang and asked would I consider it.

“I was contemplating still playing this year but I think we’ve come to a compromise where I’ll coach and if required I’ll put my boots on to help out.

“I’m just going to manage that this year."

With the reserves team likely to be made up of available first-teamers that don't make the Super League matchday 17 and academy products, much of the players' training requirements will already be covered.

“My role will be mostly about managing the team-run and game day," said Mitchell.

“It’s probably going to allow me some opportunity to work with some community clubs this year as well, with the likes of Woolston and Crosfields, building some bridges for maybe some of their players to have an opportunity through the year.

“That might change if the first team or under 18s have a few injuries, we might need to bring some players in but we’ll just have to see how that pans out over the season and be very flexible with it.”

He was pleased with the performance in the opening game against Newcastle Thunder on Saturday, a 48-0 win.

“It was good to see the lads expressing themselves," he said.

“Newcastle were a young squad, so we can’t get too excited with ourselves.

“We probably overplayed a little bit too much early on but it’s the first time we’ve been together properly as a squad, so there’s promising signs for the season.

“The lads are all in good spirits and carried on with some of the momentum we picked up from the Swinton friendly. Although the pitch was bad against Swinton, there was some good efforts there as well.”

He gave his thoughts on the performance of new signing from the NRL, Leilani Latu.

“I thought he did really well," said Mitchell.

“He looked a little bit heavy towards the end of his stints but I must say around the training on Friday he was really good with the young lads.

“His experience showed with the way he trained and I think he took that on the field with some really good efforts and some good organisation around him.

“It’s the longest game time he’s had for a while but it was probably a little bit slower than it may have been in the Queensland Cup last year for him.

“It was good for him to get longer minutes and get him ready for if he’s required for the first team.”

A number of players' performances caught his eye.

“I thought Keanan Brand really grew into the game, Kyle Shelford was very solid again around the middle, Eribe Doro had some really good impact," he said.