Paul McGregor named NSW State of Origin assistant coach, replacing Craig Fitzgibbon in Brad Fittler’s squad
Posted On September 15, 2021
Paul McGregor has been unveiled as the new assistant coach of New South Wales, replacing outgoing Craig Fitzgibbon.
McGregor joins the Blues’ home camp after a seven-year stint as coach of the St George Illawarra Dragons, where he coached the team to 70 wins between 2014 and 2020.
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The 53-year-old will join Danny Buderus and Greg Alexander in head coach Brad Fittler’s squad, with Fitzgibbon starting to start coaching the Cronulla Sharks in 2022.
“It’s a huge honor, having represented the Blues throughout the 90s as a player and now on the coaching staff… I have a lot of gratitude and appreciation for that,” said McGregor in an NSWRL statement.
“I also have a lot of passion for the game and perseverance. I think I have earned ‘Freddy’s’ trust and loyalty over time. In his first year as a Blues coach he took on a lot of my [Dragons] players in the series and they won.
“It is important for me to influence his vision for the team and I will do so with determination.”
McGregor is a long-time associate with the Blues’ State of Origin program, having made 14 Origin appearances as a player, and Fittler said he had a great deal of admiration for his new assistant.
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“It is obviously disappointing to lose Craig Fitzgibbon, who has made such a valuable contribution to our group over the past three years, but replacing him with someone of the caliber and experience of Paul McGregor is exceptional,” said said Fittler.
“I was fortunate enough to have played with ‘Mary’ and stayed with him in the early 90s playing State of Origin and he will fit perfectly into the culture of our band, while adding a immense value in what he can bring as a shrewd coach.
“He’s really passionate about the game and NSW.”
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