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Mystery man Holbrook may be right choice for Saints.

Byline: sport@liverpool.com JOHN LAWLESS SCRUMS DOWN ON THE RUGBY LEAGUE SCENE

JJUSTIN Holbrook anyone? No, me neither. However, the fact the man taking over the reins at St Helens is a complete unknown to many in this country may be no bad thing.

Holbrook, 41, is stepping up from being assistantcoach at Australian NRL side Sydney Roosters.

There's a school of thought that finding an ambitious young assistantcoach Down Under is the way to go.

The oft-cited example is that of Michael Maguire who came over to Wigan as a relatively unheralded coach but made a huge impact at the Warriors and enjoyed tremendous success before returning to a top job in his homeland.

Besides, just picking a famous name, or one that has a previous association with the club, can be a sign of pandering to the fans rather than seeking the best man for the job. When it doesn't work out, they won't thank you for it.

When Holbrook officially takes up the reins at Saints (as soon as his visa has been sorted out), it will be interesting to see if he has a similar effect on their style of play as Maguire had at Wigan.

He specifically focused on attack at the Roosters and that's been the main problem area for Saints so far this season.

He's sticking with the backroom team of Sean Long and Jamahl Lolesi so there will be some continuity.

Holbrook's contract takes him to the end of the 2019 season and it may take a while for him to put his stamp on the team.

In the meantime, a 'new coach bounce' would be handy.

CAPTION(S):

Justin Holbrook during his playing days

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:May 6, 2017
Words:284
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