HUDDERSFIELD Giants captain Leroy Cudjoe says long-serving team-mate Michael Lawrence is a “great role model for any young kid” aspiring to do well in rugby league.
England Knights loose forward Lawrence – nicknamed ‘Bruno’ – is rewarded with a testimonial game against Bradford Bulls tomorrow having spent his entire career with hometown Huddersfield.
He made his debut in 2007, has amassed more than 250 games for the club and is seen as one of the most hard-working forwards in Super League.
Cudjoe said: “One thing that stands out is his work ethic and that’s not just in games, but at training also.
“The way he plays is the way he trains, which is why he’s so well respected amongst the groups.
“He’s a great role model for any young kid coming through.
“Every team needs players like Bruno. You need balance.
“It’s good having strike players, but you also need players that do a lot of work that nobody sees,” he said.
“Bruno does that, but much more as he’s one of our leaders and voices; he sets high standards and you can see that with the way he plays the game.
“He’s a massive part of what we do and what we stand for.”
England centre Leroy Cudjoe, 30, hails from Newsome Panthers, the same Huddersfield amateur club as Lawrence.
“I knew Bruno when we were at Newsome, but didn’t have much to do with him as I was two years older,” he recalled.
“I also played a year older, too, so there was a big gap. But coming through he was the gun; there was a lot of hype about him and that’s the reason he got his Giants debut at 17.
“He had massive potential, but what gave him the advantage was his work ethic.
“It’s great to see him getting this testimonial.”
Lawrence actually made his senior debut before Cudjoe whose bow came a year later in 2008, but they have played countless games together since with their highlight being helping Huddersfield win the 2013 League Leaders’ Shield.