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Michael Maguire speaks on “special time” at Wigan Warriors and what it was like seeing Shaun Wane succeed after him

Nowadays, Michael Maguire has been making headlines for two main reasons.

For his departure from Wests Tigers this season and for his pursuit of World Cup glory with New Zealand.

Last night, his side beat Leeds Rhinos 74-0 to prepare for the tournament as the Kiwis look to recapture the magic of 2008.

However, the performance somewhat played second fiddle to an emotional night of farewells which Maguire reflected on after the game especially as a close friend was making his final appearance on the night in the shape of Thomas Leuluai.

“It was very special for the Leeds guys who are finishing up and for Leeds to allow us to put this on. There is a strong history between Leeds and the Kiwi team.

“Tommy at the end there, I was very fortunate to coach Tommy in two years and he alongside a lot of players was a huge part in changing the dynamics of that club. He’s done that for a long time.

“To have all the Kiwis there putting on the Haka for him and his three kids was pretty special.”

Of course, Maguire knows Leuluai through their time at Wigan in which they won every major trophy together in a two year spell.

A great Wigan team that’s not always given the credit it deserved, Maguire noted just how special it was to him.

“It was a pretty special time in my life,” Maguire said, “It’s a special club and it was nice to see people like Waney to go on and succeed and the club to go on and succeed once I was gone.

“I was there the other night with Tommy and saw Sean O’Loughlin, Paul Deacon, Liam Farrell and many others.

“All that time I was over here was pretty special. We as a group that were together do remember it.”

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