Justin Morgan (rugby league)
2 August 1975 |
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
|Source: RLP (player) RLP (coach)|
Justin Morgan (born 2 August 1975 in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia) is a rugby league coach and former footballer of the 1990s and 2000s. He is currently an assistant coach of the Canberra Raiders. His position of preference was at prop. He has also worked as a commentator.
Morgan's career started with the Parramatta Eels. He later played for the Canberra Raiders and, more famously, with the New Zealand Warriors who made the 2002 National Rugby League Grand Final after winning the Minor Premiership. He retired from playing aged 26.
Morgan rose to prominence as coach of French club, Toulouse Olympique in 2005, when they reached the Rugby League Challenge Cup Semi-finals. In August 2005, Morgan took control of Hull KR after he was lured to the club by their chief executive Paul Lakin. It was a poor end to 2005 for Rovers after winning the Northern Rail Cup against Castleford Tigers as they were dumped out of the play-offs at home to Halifax RLFC.
The 2006 season however was far better for Morgan. His side lost just two games out of the eighteen they played that year, finishing top and then beat Widnes Vikings 29-22 to advance to the Grand Final at the Halliwell Jones Stadium in Warrington. They then beat the Vikings 29-16 which guaranteed promotion to Super League for 2007. On the cup front, Rovers shocked the Rugby League World with a huge upset in the quarter finals of the Challenge Cup to Super League side Warrington Wolves, running out 40-36 winners on the day. Rovers however reliquinshed their hold on the Northern Rail Cup as Leigh Centurions beat them 22-18 at Bloomfield Road, Blackpool in the final.
In their first year in Super League, Rovers started well, winning four out of their first five games including wins over Wigan Warriors and Leeds Rhinos. They led the table after victory over the Rhinos. Speculation over Morgan's future intensified as Leeds Rhinos Tony Smith, the new Great Britain Lions coach, and rumour had it that Morgan was being lined up as a replacement. However, on 18 April 2006, Morgan committed himself to the club until at least 2010, two years more than his previous contract stated. Morgan also does some work as a pundit for the BBC. The 2010 season had mixed results so far with Morgan's team sitting outside the top 8 and out of the playoffs half way through the season. The 'Magic Weekend' fixture in Edinburgh during the May bank holiday weekend saw Morgan's team thrashed 54-0 against St Helens. Justin steadied the ship at Hull Kingston Rovers and led them to a second consecutive play off place ending the regular rounds in 7th place.
This led to a playoff game away at the KC Stadium to deadly rivals Hull FC, which Rovers won comfortably 21-4 to record their first ever Super League play off win. The 2010 season ended at Wigan a week later when the Robins where defeated 42-18 by the 2010 minor premiers
- Raiders appoint Justin Morgan as Assistant Coach rleague.com, 19 October 2011