Lam plans switch to coaching next term

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The Independent Online

Adrian Lam, the Wigan and Papua New Guinea scrum-half, is to retire at the end of this season.

Adrian Lam, the Wigan and Papua New Guinea scrum-half, is to retire at the end of this season.

Lam, 34 today, has recovered from a career-threatening knee operation to play an important part in his club's progress towards the Super League play-offs, but has decided to call it a day when this campaign is over.

That could leave Wigan with a scrum-half headache for next season, as their other specialist in the position, Luke Robinson, is being released to join Salford.

Lam hopes to move into coaching, either in Australia or in Britain, where his name was recently linked with the vacancy at Widnes.

The former Wigan and New Zealand coach Frank Endacott has refused to rule himself out of contention for the job.

Endacott is at Widnes on a short-term contract to assist the acting coach, Stuart Spruce, but might apply for the permanent position.

"I'm here for five weeks," he said. "We can assess things after that, but at the moment I'm just thinking about doing my bit in keeping them up. I love coaching. It never leaves you. It's like an alcoholic waiting for the next drink."

The Wigan hooker, Terry Newton, has been suspended for two matches for a reckless high tackle. He was placed on report after a challenge on St Helens' Jon Wilkin last Friday. Hull's Paul King has escaped without suspension after his sending-off for a high tackle at Castleford.

Wigan have denied that their coach, Mike Gregory, is about to stand down for health reasons. Gregory has had limited involvement with the team since going to the United States for treatment on a mystery virus after the Challenge Cup final in May.

The St Helens coach, Ian Millward, may select the 16-year-old Scott Moore in his first team again for the match against Huddersfield on Friday, despite having been criticised for using such a young player - the youngest to appear in Super League - against Wigan last Friday.

Saints expect to be without Wilkin and Darren Albert, who both have knee injuries. James Graham could be drafted in after leading the England Academy team to victory in Australia.

Salford have released Joel Caine a year early so that he can return to Australia at the end of this season for family reasons.

"Joel has a few family problems and needs to head home for personal reasons," said Salford's football director, Steve Simms. "Obviously, he had a year to go on his contract here but we feel it's the right thing."

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