Maguire has high hopes for Souths in NRL - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Maguire has high hopes for Souths in NRL

John Marsh 28/08/2011 12:59:41 PM Comments (0)

Wembley-winning coach Michael Maguire says he will attempt to repeat at South Sydney what he has achieved in just two season in Wigan - but he isn't making Rabbitohs fans any promises for 2012.

Maguire's Wigan beat Leeds 28-18 in Saturday's gripping Challenge Cup final in front of 78,482 fans at Wembley, adding to a resume that already includes a Super League title.

His former Melbourne protege Jeff Lima lifted to be awarded the Lance Todd trophy as an unlikely man of the match after posting two tries.

"I just want to come back and try and improve everything that's in front of me," Maguire said when asked about the prospect of similar success at Redfern.

"I need to get back and assess where everything's at. I have a similar plan to what I did here. I want to improve daily. If we do that, the club can have some great opportunities.

"I can see some real good signs back there at the moment and I'm looking forward to getting the opportunity to go back."

Former Storm forward Lima predicted: "He'll do well at South Sydney - as long as they do what he tells them."

Wigan looked destined to carry out the predicted cakewalk when they led 16-0 after 18 minutes, Joel Tomkins scoring one of the greatest-ever Wembley tries over 93 metres after lead-up from brother Sam.

But Leeds stunned the Lancashire team with two tries before halftime to trail by just six - a margin that was narrowed to two when centre Carl Ablett scored in the 59th minute.

When Wigan extended their lead, from Lima's try shortly afterwards, it seemed to be a result of a blatant forward pass by Lee Mossop.

Hall's second try with nine minutes remaining fired up the crowd even more, with the margin four, before video referee Steve Ganson gave Wigan half Thomas Leuluai the clincher with three minutes left.

The game was not without its controversy, Sam Tomkins appearing to give Leeds fans a two-fingered salute as he embraced winger Josh Charnley after a 10th-minute try. Leeds fans earlier this year booed Tomkins when he was playing for England.

And players became involved in a push-and-shove after fulltime, before most eventually shook hands.

Charnley played on despite a compound fracture of the finger, meaning a bone was protruding from the skin.

It was the former Cup king's first Wembley win for 16 years.

An hour after fulltime, former Melbourne players Lima, Ryan Hoffman and Brett Finch led the team onto the middle of the redeveloped stadium with their beers, to savour the victory.

It was just like they did with the Storm after the 2009 premiership triumph which was subsequently stripped from them for salary cap abuse.

Hoffman returns to the Storm next year. Leeds hooker Danny Buderus, who is seeking a release to rejoin Newcastle, was dismayed at several refereeing decisions but added: "We let in too many soft tries."

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