Fresh from the news that St.Helens will act as the training base for Kristian Woolf’s Tonga as well as Italy’s men’s team at next year’s Rugby League World Cup, Pete Emmett caught up with Woolf on his time as Tonga Head Coach.
Tonga, ranked 4th in the world will prepare for matches at Ruskin Drive Sports Village and nearby Cowley International College – both of our first team use to train whilst our Totally Wicked Stadium home will also host three men’s group matches at next year’s World Cup.
The RLWC2021 is sure to be a special occasion and extra special for our Head Coach Kristian Woolf who will be hosting his national side right here in his new St Helens home.
Over his five years as coach of the Tonga national team, Woolf has improved the nation’s world ranking from 14th to 4th and guided them to the semi-finals of the World Cup back in 2017, defeating New Zealand along the way – the first time that a tier-two team had defeated a tier-one team. He also guided them to a famous victory over Great Britain Lions in 2019 before the giant killing of Australia just a few months ago.
And on the day which marked 500 days until the start of the tournament Saints TV caught up with Woolf who talks in detail about his time as Tonga Head Coach, looking back at some of those giant killings, a bizarre moment when his side faced England back in 2017 plus he looks forward to the 2021 World Cup!
Woolf also talks about his start to life at St Helens, Lockdown and how he feels the break could actually help his Saints side push on to great things in 2020 in the FULL interview only available for Saints TV subscribers.