Matt Rodwell doesn’t look back on his time in Warrington with fond memories.
After hearing his story, you can understand why.
When the halfback signed with the Wolves in 2002 after 12 years playing in the NRL, he expected a unique experience living abroad.
"We got into the car and they started rocking the car back and forward as we started to drive out."
But what he got, while unique, isn’t what he had in mind.
After the Wolves started the season in poor form, upset supporters blamed Rodwell and coach Chris Anderson.
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With Rodwell the captain and chief playmaker and the Wolves losing their first seven games, the fans took aim at the halfback after a match.
“They were calling for my head. Allan Langer was the previous halfback, whilst he didn’t set the world on fire, he was the great Allan Langer and I came in as the next Australian halfback to replace him,” Rodwell told the Our Town Our Team podcast.
“We’d been beaten at home and we had an after-match function. The CEO came and saw me and said; ‘Matt, there’s’ a mob out front. You’re best to go out the back’ and I said ‘bugger that. I’m going to hold my head high and walk through it’.
“Well what a poor mistake that was.”
If he’d had his time over again, he’d likely taken the back exit but instead he went through the front doors and copped plenty of abuse in the process.
It didn’t stop there.
With his young family, angry supporters followed him to his career in what became a terrifying scene for the half and his loved ones.
“I had my wife, my two young daughters and my mother in law and this mob was hurling abuse at me as we walked through,” he continued.
“They followed us to the car in the carpark. We got into the car and they started rocking the car back and forward as we started to drive out. It was horrendous.
“My wife was in tears … I walked in and saw the CEO and new coach the next day and said; “that’s it. I’m done. I didn’t come here to experience that.
“I said ‘I’ll give you two more games and then it’s best we sever ties.”
Rodwell finished with 10 games to his name but his final two were performances to be proud of.
“I played the best two games I played for Warrington. I think I scored two tries in my last game,” he said.
“I said; ‘there you go, I’ve had enough and then had an operation on my groin.
“I knew time was up and I wanted to move on.
“We spent a bit of time holidaying around before moving to the Central Coast.”