New head of performance Alex Corvo is ready to welcome back the first group of players when the Vodafone Warriors start their pre-Christmas offseason training programme tomorrow morning (Wednesday).
The Vodafone Warriors have a large contingent of players representing nations at the Rugby League World Cup. They will return at various stages in the New Year.
Tomorrow a group of just over 20 players will start training. Included among them will be new signing Leivaha Pulu and Nathaniel Roache while others not involved in the World Cup are due back next week.
Renowned as one of the toughest trainers in the NRL, Corvo has been signed from the Brisbane Broncos as the Vodafone Warriors move to bolster their football department for their 2018 campaign.
For Corvo, tomorrow is the first opportunity to set the scene for what the players can expect during what is sure ot be a rigorous preseason schedule.
Securing a strength and conditioning coach of his standing was a critical appointment as the Vodafone Warriors seek to make required improvements to its football programme.
Head coach Stephen Kearney has first-hand knowledge of Corvo’s training methods as both a player and assistant coach with the Melbourne Storm while the two also worked together at the Broncos.
“Alex’s reputation is well-established, not only with the Storm and the Broncos but also with the Kangaroos and the Queensland Origin team,” said Kearney.
“We identified a need to bring in someone of Alex’s calibre to add to our resources in the football department and to bring a hard edge and attitude to the environment.
“I can’t rate him highly enough after training under him as a player at the Storm and then working alongside him as a coach.”
Vodafone Warriors CEO Cameron George said securing Corvo was a key development as the Vodafone Warriors worked through their 2017 review and planned for the offseason and the 2018 campaign.
“After the way we performed this year, we had to make changes in football. We weren’t good enough and we’ll be doing all we can to effect change as we seek major improvements across the staff and the squad,” he said.
“Alex’s record speaks for itself. He’s the ideal person to fill the need we have identified.”
As a prop, Corvo’s playing career included five first-grade appearances for Canberra in 1991. One of his team-mates back then was Melbourne Storm coaching guru Craig Bellamy.
He was Melbourne’s head of performance from 2002-2013, an era when the Storm made five NRL grand finals and won three of them.
He has been head of strength and conditioning with the Broncos since 2013 while he spent six years in the same role with the Kangaroos from 2009-2015 and was on the Maroons’ performance staff in their successful Origin campaigns in the past two years.
Corvo's brother Mark played more than 90 NRL matches for Canberra, Adelaide and Brisbane from 1993-2001 during an era when rugby league great Ruben Wiki and Andrew McFadden - both on the Vodafone Warriors' staff now - were team-mates at the Raiders.