Matty Lees is certainly ripping it up on the field – and now he’s winning off it too.
The young prop has just completed an electrical engineering apprenticeship with distinction, something he started when he joined the club at 16.
Developing his skills away from rugby was important to him and he admits it began following a chat with his dad.
“It was something he insisted on me doing,” Matty said. “He said I could get injured and never play again so I needed to be doing something. He was in engineering and I always enjoyed seeing what he was doing so it made sense. It’s an important back-up plan for me and something I have enjoyed doing.”
Matty signed for Saints at 16 and has come through the Academy system to play 11 games for the first team.
Saints Player Welfare Manager Neil Kilshaw said: “We are extremely proud of Matty not only completing his engineering apprenticeship but to excel so much as to gain a distinction. Matty has worked so hard both on and off the field since joining us as a 16-year-old, and alongside his vocational career development he is a blossoming Super League player with a bright future ahead of him.
“Every one of our young players is different and as such our Academy is set up to cater for their individual needs. On the field we quite rightly help to the players to maximise their individual physical traits and positional requirements, and off the field we encourage them to forge a career path that is relevant to them.
“We’ve had players in colleges as far afield as Ulverston and Telford completing A Levels or BTECs, whilst other players are apprentice engineers, electricians and plasterers.”
He continued: “The reality is that a Rugby League career may last as short as one game or long as 15 years and involvement in our Academy works alongside their career development.
“This career planning continues well into their Super League careers and the majority of the first team squad are involved in a variety of education programmes away from the field of play.”