Martyn Ridyard Becomes The Third Player To Score 2000 Points For Leigh

Martyn Ridyard has written his name into the Leigh Centurions record books by becoming only the third player in history to score 2,000 points for the Club.

Ridy, sponsored by RM Courier Services Ltd, achieved his landmark with his third goal in the 34-22 win over Widnes Vikings at LSV, converting Andy Thornley’s second try with an angled kick from the right wing.

John Woods and the late Jimmy Ledgard are the only other Leigh players to achieve the feat.

Club legend Woods was first to pay tribute to Ridyard’s achievement.

“I’m really pleased for Martyn,” he said. “It’s a great effort by him and one that will perhaps only sink in once he’s retired.

“Martyn’s a Leigh lad and he’s given great service to the club. I think at times people don’t realise just what a contribution he’s made.

“He’s a very good player, smart and skilful and a great team player. Like me he’s a round-the-corner kicker, but unlike me he uses a kicking tee.

“He has played to a great degree of consistency over the years and I don’t think he’s had the recognition he deserves.

“He’s a clever player and takes everything in his stride. He’s level-headed and he reacts well to pressure situations.

“Being the goal-kicker is a big responsibility, one that many don’t really realise. Your kicks can make the difference between winning the game or not and Ridy’s won a lot of games for Leigh over the years.

“Having the kicking role never really bothered me. I took the view that if they went over I was the hero; if they didn’t I was the bad boy. Once I had accepted that, the pressure never got to me. I suspect Martyn’s the same.

“Personally, I was never really worried about records but it was a great day when I broke Jimmy Ledgard’s Club points record tally in the game against Halifax in September 1990.

“Jimmy was the first person to congratulate me and that meant a lot. Playing for Leigh was all I ever wanted to do and I really enjoyed my time in the game.

“I hope Martyn goes on to keep scoring points and winning games for Leigh for years to come. He’s a very modest lad and deserves all the accolades that come his way.”

Leigh Centurions Head Coach John Duffy said: “It’s been a proud moment for Martyn. All his family were here today and it’s a great achievement by him.”

Club Captain Micky Higham said: “It’s a major milestone, becoming only the third man in Leigh history to score 2,000 points for the club. That’s a remarkable effort. Ridy’s a stalwart, an ambassador and a smart footballer.”

Martyn Ridyard said: “I’m proud of the achievement and I want to keep plodding on and get as many points as I can. The first achievement was just to play for the town and as the points were building up the targets were there.

“I never really aimed for anything until I got an award for being in the top five point-scorers and obviously it becomes a lot more realistic then and you think how many you can actually get to. It is nice to break that landmark and I’ll see how many I can get before I finish.”

Ridyard made his debut for Leigh in the first competitive game at LSV against London Skolars in 2009. By the end of the Widnes game he’d amassed 2,004 points from 80 tries and 848 goals, including 12 dropgoals in 249 games for the club.

Woods scored 2,492pts in two spells for Leigh encompassing 349 career games, making his debut in 1976, scoring 152 tries and kicking 997 goals, including 13 dropgoals. The four-point try was introduced in 1983-84 as previously a try was worth three points.

When Ledgard joined Leigh from Dewsbury in 1948 season the £2,650 fee was then a record for Rugby League. A brilliant goal-kicker, favouring the traditional toe-end style, he went on to kick 1,043 goals and score 36 tries in 334 Leigh games, amassing 2,194pts.

“I joined Leigh in 1948 when, under the chairmanship of Jim Hilton, the club was enjoying its revival,” he told me in 1990. “They had just moved to a ground in Kirkhall Lane, later known as Hilton Park, where I was to spend many happy years.

“Some of the highlights of my career were when wearing the cherry and white jersey. The warmth and friendliness of the Leigh people made the move over from Yorkshire a happy one and while living in Leigh my wife and I made life-long friends.” He died in January 2007, aged 84.

Martyn Ridyard
Season A T G DG P
Leigh 2009 14 7 11 1 51
Leigh 2010 27 11 10 0 64
Leigh 2011 30 21 6 0 96
Leigh 2012 31 14 132 1 321
Leigh 2013 30 9 121 2 280
Leigh 2014 30 3 165 2 344
Leigh 2015 30 7 158 1 345
Leigh 2016 25 5 135 2 292
Leigh 2017 5 0 2 0 4
Leigh 2019 27 3 96 3 207
Total 249 80 836 12 2004
John Woods
Season A T G DG P
Leigh 1976-77 39 5 88 2 193
Leigh 1977-78 34 16 140 0 328
Leigh 1978-79 36 10 85 1 201
Leigh 1979-80 36 22 80 2 228
Leigh 1980-81 32 14 85 1 213
Leigh 1981-82 36 18 146 1 347
Leigh 1982-83 28 12 48 1 133
Leigh 1983-84 35 27 123 1 355
Leigh 1984-85 26 11 64 2 174
Leigh 1990-91 14 8 34 0 100
Leigh 1991-92 24 8 72 2 178
Leigh 1992-93 9 1 19 0 42
Total 349 152 984 13 2492
Jimmy Ledgard
Season A T G P
Leigh 1947-48 9 0 13 26
Leigh 1948-49 34 2 55 116
Leigh 1949-50 35 6 92 202
Leigh 1950-51 17 1 45 93
Leigh 1951-52 43 4 125 262
Leigh 1952-53 36 5 116 247
Leigh 1953-54 36 3 104 217
Leigh 1954-55 36 5 165 345
Leigh 1955-56 38 8 148 320
Leigh 1956-57 20 0 79 158
Leigh 1957-58 30 2 101 208
Total 334 36 1043 2194

Article and statistics by Club Chairman Mike Latham

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