Leeds Rhinos: Rob Burrow preparing for life after rugby

Rob Burrow.
Rob Burrow.
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LEEDS RHINOS legend Rob Burrow says retiring from playing could well be like coming off a drug.

Burrow is set to work in Rhinos’ player-performance department when he hangs up his boots at the end of this season.

Rhinos have yet to announce a successor to departing academy coach Adrian Morley, but have confirmed Burrow will have an involvement with the under-19s.

He insists coaching at first-team level is not on his agenda, but would not rule it out in the long term.

“I am not sure about first-team coaching, but I do enjoy coaching and I am really keen to get stuck in with youth,” he said.

“I am going to be involved with the academy and I want to be a hands-on man, I don’t ever want to sit in an office. I don’t think I could go straight from playing to working in an office, but being involved with coaching will ease my way out of it.

“It’s like coming off a drug, you have to wean yourself off it.

“I would have to go into re-hab if I had to come straight out of rugby, but I will still be around the place so it won’t be a big shock to me.

“Not playing will be a bit crazy, but being around the facility on a daily basis is something I have done all my life.”

Burrow has a maximum of four games left as a player. Of his future, he added: “Working with youth is something I have enjoyed throughout my career. I have done that with the scholarship and I was involved for about five years straight.

“It is something I wanted to do after rugby and I am really keen to get on with it now. I would imagine you do that for so long and you may need another challenge, which may be trying myself at first-team level.

“That’s a long way down the line, but at the moment I am just pretty keen to help the next generation at this club.

“I do think to be a first-team coach you can’t be an assistant long enough.

“You have to be under as many coaches as you can and learn as much as you can.

“That’s what I am going to be doing when I’m working with youth.

“I’ll be taking the good parts I’ve learned from coaches, putting it all together and trying to put my own spin on it.

“What I can add is my experience from coming through the system. You get better as a coach as you go along, but I’m happy to pass my experience on and hopefully that can nurture the next generation.”

Burrow is set to return from a one-game ban when Rhinos face Salford Red Devils at Headingley tonight.

“One thing we have done all year is bounce back after defeats,” said the 34-year-old, who needs one try to move into joint eighth place on Super League’s all-time list.

“We have to be good now, we can’t afford to be good one week and poor the next.

“From now on we have to be building every week because we want to be in the Grand Final and we have to perform well in a semi-final to get there.

“The teams we are playing now have been the best teams throughout the season, so these games are the intensity we want to be playing at.”

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