A WREATH in the shape and colours of a Great Britain Rugby League jersey was a fitting accompaniment for legendary Leigh RLFC player Charlie Pawsey's final journey.

The funeral of the fearsome second-rower, who died last month, aged 88, took place last Thursday at St Luke's RC Church, Irlams O'the'Height, Salford followed by interment at St Mary's Cemetery, Wardley and a reception at the nearby Morning Star pub.

Pawsey was the cornerstone of a rugged Leigh pack from the late 1940s to the mid 1950s and toured Australia with Great Britain in 1954.

Among the mourners was Tommy Sale, 93, who was a team-mate of the former Salford docker. Tommy went along with members of Leigh Past Players Association led by Mick Martyn who joined Leigh just as Pawsey's career was coming to an end.

Other representatives included Leigh PPA members Maurice Bailey and Terry Gorman; Stan Dorrington, who played in Leigh's 1971 Challenge Cup win at Wembley, and stalwart supporter Don Boyle.

"I played against Charlie when I was a teenager and he had moved to Huddersfield," said Mick Martyn, Leigh's try-scoring record holder who went on to represent Great Britain.

"He was a real handful on the field but a gentleman in everyday life. Over the years I kept in touch with Charlie and would collect him from his home in Salford and take him to various Lions' functions in Yorkshire.

"I'd gathered a lot of photographs of Charlie over the years and it was good to show them to his family and friends who appreciated seeing them."

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