NEW Wakefield Trinity Wildcats head coach James Webster says injecting his own personality will be the biggest change he makes as the Australian attempts to revive the club’s fortunes.
He was promoted from assistant after Richard Agar left on Monday and has been given a deal until the end of 2016, a sign of the belief Wakefield’s hierarchy have in the relative rookie as they look to avoid falling into the Super League relegation battle.
Ex-Hull KR scrum-half Webster, 34, had been No 2 at Belle Vue for the last two and a half years after serving a similar stint under Agar at Hull FC.
“It gives me some confidence; I’m extremely happy the club have showed some faith in me to give me such a long deal,” he admitted, with Wakefield in 12th place, six points above Bradford Bulls who will imminently hear a decision on their appeal against a points deduction for entering administration.
“Obviously the position we’re in at the moment means we’re looking to retain some of our players and bring some new ones in.
“It’s a little bit tough with the league position we’re in, but hopefully that will be clarified in the next couple of weeks and we can look to kick on.”
Given they are out of the Challenge Cup, Wakefield, with their new man in charge, have plenty of time to prepare for their next game against bottom-placed London Broncos a week today.
Webster, who was also Agar’s France assistant at the World Cup, admitted: “That was always the idea.
“I thought the club came up with a really smart idea and once they decided – between Richard and the club – that the deal was going to be done the way it was, they saw the gap for the news to settle in with the players and for us to, not regroup, but refocus for what the next half of the year will be for us.
“We’ve been able to do that and been able to use (yesterday’s) training session as a bit of an eye opener before we start some really good prep for London next week. It’s a new season for us.
“As for changing things, what I bring different to Rich and other coaches is me.
“It’s my personality; the way I do things is going to be different to others and the main thing I decided when I was first offered the job was I wasn’t going to be different just to be different, somebody I’m not just to please other people.
“As a coach the way you get things across and personality and the way you manage people is just as important as what you do on the field.
“There won’t be major structural changes. I don’t think when you watch our team play there’ll be differences. I just think we have to do a few things a little bit better.”
He will not look to add to his coaching staff until 2015 and, instead, current Wakefield assistant Stuart Dickens, the former Featherstone Rovers prop who also takes the club’s Under-19s side, will be given extra responsibilities.