Nov 23 2011 by Colin Paterson, Airdrie & Coatbridge
A CAIRNHILL teenager has won a scholarship with one of rugby league’s biggest clubs.
Winger Anthony Campbell has taken the first steps towards a professional career in the sport after landing a place in the Salford City Reds academy squad.
The 15-year-old has been training every Saturday for the last six weeks under the watchful eye of Salford performance manager Chris Coop.
And the St Margaret’s High School pupil was thrilled to hear that he was one of a select few who will go to the next level at the club.
“I was really chuffed to find out that I had made the team,” said Anthony, who started playing rugby league with junior side Monklands Warriors.
“Chris told me that he had assessed my performance and that I had been good enough to make it.
“I’ve been training down there every Saturday for the past six weeks. We’d leave here at 8am and get back at about 7.30pm. I was nervous to start with but soon got over that.”
Anthony’s Warriors team-mate, Craig Muir, is also in with a chance of landing a year-long scholarship with Salford.
The 15-year-old Clyde Valley High School pupil, who plays outside-centre, is still being assessed by Coop.
He said: “It has been really good to train down there and it would be great to get on the team.
“I’ll be going down every week until the club make a decision on me.
“I would love to become a professional. Rugby League is a great sport as it keeps you fit and demands much more of your fitness.”
Warriors coach Les Obre, who has worked with the pair over the past few years, says both players have a great chance of a career in the sport.
He told Advertiser Sport: “They are now playing with and against youngsters of a similar standard which will be good for them.
“This is a great experience for them. It’s tough physically but I’m excited for both Anthony and Craig.
“They are both very talented and have made good progress. I’m hoping it all works out well for them.”
Les says the future is also looking bright for the Monklands Warriors as they continue their partnership with Salford.
The Warriors played before the last-ever game at The Willows when they defeated local side Cannishead Rhinos 28-4.
“That’s three years in a row we’ve won down there,” said Les. “Everyone had a great time and it was a great occasion.
“Salford are moving to a new stadium next season so it was an honour to play in one of the final games at The Willows.
“Their coaches want to run a camp up here next year and will be taking the opportunity of looking at more of our players.
“We could also be arranging more games with teams in the north of England. It’s an exciting time for the Warriors.”