Maurice Lindsay: Rugby league ‘visionary’ dies aged 81

Lindsay was the former chairman of Wigan Warriors and chief executive of the Rugby Football League and Super League

Mark Staniforth
Tuesday 17 May 2022 10:26
Comments
Former Wigan chairman Maurice Lindsay has died at the age of 81
Former Wigan chairman Maurice Lindsay has died at the age of 81

Maurice Lindsay, the architect of Wigan’s golden era and also a former chief executive of the Rugby Football League, has died at the age of 81.

Wigan paid tribute to their former chairman, who joined the club in 1980 and sparked an unprecedented period of success, saying he “will be forever remembered as a visionary”.

Under Lindsay’s leadership, Wigan won eight league titles and also eight consecutive Challenge Cups between 1985 and 1992, with a side featuring stars like Ellery Hanley and Martin Offiah.

Lindsay later went on to lead the RFL and was one of the instigators of Super League and the switch to summer rugby in 1996, for which his club were rebranded as Wigan Warriors.

Wigan said they were “deeply saddened” by his passing, adding: “Lindsay was respected and admired throughout the world of Rugby League and will be forever remembered as a visionary – proposing the Super League which changed the face of Rugby League forever.

“Wigan Warriors sends its deepest condolences to the family and friends of Maurice at this very sad time.”

Lindsay subsequently served as chief executive of Super League before returning to Wigan following their move from Central Park to the JJB Stadium.

He also served on the board of Wigan Athletic alongside owner Dave Whelan, and had a brief stint as chairman of Preston North End.

Ellery Hanley starred in Wigan’s golden era under Maurice Lindsay (PA Archive)

RFL chief executive Ralph Rimmer said: “Maurice Lindsay will be remembered as one of the most significant leaders in the sport’s history.

“First at the Wigan club, where the strength of his personality was critical in their emergence as arguably the greatest club side of all-time in this country, one which dominated domestically and flourished internationally, and whose impact extended well beyond Rugby League.

“Then when he moved to the game’s central administration at the RFL, he was the leading figure in driving through the inception of the Super League in 1996, which genuinely transformed the sport.

“He was a truly unique character, a wonderful raconteur, always had a twinkle in his eye – and he lived a remarkable life. Rugby League would not be where it is today without him.”

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in