Terry O’Connor

Terry O’Connor

A native of Widnes, Terry was picked up from local Widnes side St Maries after also playing for Widnes Tigers. He was a former barla international and toured NZ with them in 1991. Also on the tour was Darren Fleary, Paul Anderson and Barrie McDermott, all of them went on to gain full international honours. In 1990 Terry signed for the original Red Devils Salford, and played for them for three years.

He had the opportunity of signing for Wigan, St Helens, Warrington, Leeds and Bradford, but chose Salford as his childhood hero Steve O’Neill was part of the coaching team, along with Kevin Tameti. He was awarded Salford’s young player of the year in 1991. He played in the Regal Trophy quarter final against Wigan at the Willows and was awarded the MOM. He joined Wigan in 1994 for a Salford record transfer fee of £95,000 and New Zealand International Sam Panapa. Salford also got a further £10,000 when Terry played for Great Britain.

Whilst at Wigan he went on to win the Challenge Cup, Charity Shield, Regal trophy, Premiership Stones Bitter championship and also the Grand Final. In his time at Wigan he played 317 first grade games and was voted into the Wigan and Super League team of the decade. He was a mainstay of the Wigan pack for a decade and enjoyed a testimonial in 2004 for his services to Wigan. Terry donated part of his testimonial money to under privileged children, which allowed them to go on holiday to Euro Disney back in November 2004. In the history of Wigan RLFC, only 27 players have worn the Cherry and White top more than him.

Terry joined his hometown club Widnes at the end of the 2004 season. He captained the side in 2005 but with the introduction of Catalans Dragons to Super League in 2006 meant that the team who finished 11th were relegated and it was unfortunate but Widnes finished 11th ahead of Leigh. Terry played on for 1 more year in the National League for Widnes and got to play his last competitive game in the Grand Final only to be beaten by Hull KR. He was also joined in his final year by his good friend Barrie McDermott they both retired in 2006.

Terry was a Great Britain international with 15 caps. He debuted in 1996 in the South Pacific tour and retired from Great Britain in 2002. He went on to represent Ireland at the 2000 Rugby League World Cup and has captained the Irish on numerous occasions. O’Connor has also represented Lancashire in the Origin Series in 2001 and 2002 and never lost against arch rivals Yorkshire. He was awarded the Roy Powell medal for his performance in the 2001 series.

Since retiring from playing the game in 2006 he has taken the roll of Sporting Director at Widnes Vikings along with his role at Sky Sports, appearing in light-hearted features with Barrie McDermott as well as serving as a pundit for the coverage of lower-league games.


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