RUGBY LEAGUE’S QUALITY STREET GANG 11 – ALAN GRICE (PT 1)

RUGBY LEAGUE’S QUALITY STREET GANG 11 – ALAN GRICE (PT 1)

by | Jan 31, 2023

Former Salford Prop Forward, Alan Grice, Recalls Memories Of His Playing Days In The 1970s

CONTENTS

Part 1 – HIS EARLY RUGBY LEAGUE CAREER

Part 2 – HIS PLAYING CAREER WITH SALFORD

Part 3 –HE REMEMBERS HIS SALFORD TEAMMATES AND COACHES

Part 4 – HIS POST SALFORD CAREER

                             Part 1 – HIS EARLY RUGBY LEAGUE CAREER

A native of St Helens, our former prop, Alan Grice, who had a club career approaching ten seasons, was one of the longest serving forwards of his era, which, in the hurly-burly of the front row, was quite significant, and when you factor in his lack of size for that position it becomes most remarkable.  Indeed, having signed professional terms in May, 1970, it was the end of the decade before he eventually moved on to continue his career, at Swinton.

It was at primary school, that he first started playing rugby with the U10s, and this continued right through to the U15s.  In fact the team proved to be a really good side, which went on to win the Lancashire Schools Cup one season, beating Wigan in the final.  Surprisingly, however, only a handful of the side made their mark as professionals, whilst a far greater number of the side which they had defeated in that final, such as Kevin O’Loughlin, developed to a very high level.

Owing to that lack of size, however, it was not at prop that Alan started out in those early days, but initially in the centre, before moving to the second row.  He did, in fact, start playing football with Parr Labour Club, where he played for their U17s and then their U19s, in an effort to build up his physique, in order to cope with the demands of rugby, to which he returned with renowned, local amateur club, Blackbrook, with their U21s.

“Blackbrook were a good club to play for, because although it was a different environment from school, they still required discipline and a strong work ethic from all their players.”

it was while playing there that he was noticed by Salford scout, Harry Williams, with the result that he became the last player to be signed to Salford by then coach, Griff Jenkins, before Griff was replaced, a few weeks later, by Cliff Evans.

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