Jack Higginson Signs For Leigh Centurions

Leigh Centurions are delighted to confirm the signing of Ireland international centre Jack Higginson from Wigan Warriors.

The 21-year-old recently scored two tries on his international debut in Ireland’s 36-10 victory over Scotland in Dublin. He also played in the following games against France and Wales.

Higginson’s form so impressed the watching scouts that he was invited to train with the Ireland Rugby Union Sevens squad. He derives his Irish heritage from his grandmother, who was born and raised in Wicklow. But any ambitions in that direction were quickly shelved when John Duffy came calling.

“I had a week training with the Ireland Sevens team,” Higginson explains. “It was a good week and certainly different, but League’s my game.

“Already I know John’s getting a good team together. Training has been really good and the team has been getting ripped in.

“The other night at training the forwards were really getting stuck into one another at the wrestle. They needed one or two stitches but they just got back on with it. At least us backs know we’ve got some big lads to take us forward.”

It’s not the first time scouts from another sport have tried to tempt Higginson away from Rugby League.

As an infant he was courted by no less than five Premier League football clubs but he preferred playing rugby for Rochdale Mayfield. From there he joined the Wigan Warriors academy.

“At Wigan it’s all about rugby and you quickly learn the core stuff,” Higginson says. “They bring you up well and it stands you in good stead. It’s not a bad thing to come through for any player. You’re always playing in a strong team and they have big expectations of you.”

Higginson made his Super League debut a few days before his 19th birthday against Warrington Wolves at the DW Stadium in 2016 and later that year scored his first Super League try in the away game against Leeds Rhinos.

“It was a tough start, playing against Warrington and up against Ryan Atkins but a great experience,” he reflects. “I played three first team games for Wigan that year but unfortunately I’ve been unlucky with injuries and I’ve had three operations. But hopefully that’s all behind me now and I can progress my career with Leigh.”

Higginson will combine his new part-time playing career with an apprenticeship as an electrician and is looking forward to testing himself in the Championship. A few games playing for Workington Town and Swinton Lions on dual registration have already given him a taste of first team rugby.

“The Championship is a very tough league and there are some strong teams in there, he adds, “But it’s a great challenge. Signing for Leigh is a great opportunity for me and the facilities here are fantastic.”

Leigh Centurions head coach John Duffy said: “I’ve coached Jack before at Wigan and Swinton and he doesn’t know how good he is. Those three internationals he’s just played will have brought his game on and Ireland RU obviously liked what they saw.

“Jack’s an all-rounder and can play any sport, but Rugby League’s his game. He wants to come to Leigh and play every week and enjoy his rugby.

“He knows we are building up the club from the bottom and he’s excited to be in at the start of the journey. He’s a very skilful player- we’ve seen that already in training- and he’s a very good capture for Leigh Centurions.”

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