KURT Haggerty has given his first press conference since taking on the interim head coach role of Leigh Centurions.

Stepping up from assistant to John Duffy, who along with head of rugby Garreth Carvell departed their positions on Wednesday, the 32-year-old ex-Leigh back rower touched on what has happened in the past 24 hours, this Sunday's game at Wakefield Trinity and moving forward from there with some potential recruitment to boost a squad down to its bare bones.

Here's how it went:

How have the last couple of days been for you?

“For me personally it’s been a chaotic 24/48 hours. Everybody’s ok. And obviously our thoughts are with John and his family at the moment. But we’re cracking on, we’re ok.”

Can you give some insight into the areas you can make changes without changing the squad?

“We’re going to look to play a little bit more. We’re going to be a little bit more energetic defensively and we’ll fix up areas as we go. But we just need to get some energy back into the team.”

Are you continuing to look into the second half of matches whereby the team has been fading away?

“We’ll put some things in place that will hopefully help on that. We just need to gain on experience and keep getting better each game. And if we can compete for 40 minutes, then 50 and 60, then we won’t be too far off a win.”

And have you got any good news with players coming back from injury?

“At this moment in time we’ve not. We’re scratching a little bit but the lads who are there are ready to play.”

Do you feel you will have to change the playing pattern you’ve developed, or stick with that and just look for some new bodies?

“A little bit of both. We’ll look to keep some things that are working well for us and change some things that are not working so well. And whoever we look to bring in I’ll look to add to how we want to play in both those respects.”

How do you see Wakefield panning out against you?

“I think Wakefield will very confident playing against us this week. They’re in good form and playing some really good rugby. So we’ve got to be good to compete with Wakefield this weekend.”

Looking back at the game against Hull Kingston Rovers, what were the good points of that you think you can build on?

“I think offensively we showed some good signs with the ball. I think we looked to break them down at times, probably not as much as we would have liked as a coaching staff. But there’s certainly some areas with the ball that we can move forward with.”

> READ: Kurt Haggerty's coaching background

The coaching role is up for grabs? Have you thrown your hat into the ring to hold on to it permanently?

“This last 24 hours have been that crazy I don’t think I’ve slept, so I’ve not put a great deal of thought into it. I’ll just do the job that I can now for the team and whatever progresses from there I’ll sit down with Derek and have a chat.”

Is it a job you would like though?

“I’ve got ambitions to be a head coach, yeah, for sure.”

If somebody else came on board, would you hopefully be happy to stay as part of their staff?

“Yeah, if it’s the right person and they’ve got the right style of play. At the end of the day, I work at Leigh and I’ve got a close affection to the club. So, yeah, why not?”

Did John confide in you before his announcement?

“I spoke to John. We’re all there for him and anything that he needs. We’re going to have a catch-up with him and make sure he’s alright, but he’s a great character and I’m sure he’ll be ok.”

Garreth Carvell’s gone as well, he was the team manager wasn’t he?

“Yeah. It’s another tough thing to comprehend with losing another member of staff.”

Your team against Wakefield then, what changes do you think you will make – positional or bodies being moved around or somebody else getting an opportunity?

“At the moment not a great deal. We’re down to the bare bodies so there might be a little bit of shuffling about or we might just have to go with what we’ve got. We’ve got another session today and Saturday so we’ll know more then.”

You’ve said there won’t be many returning for Sunday’s game, but can you just provide us with an update on who is closest to returning in the next couple of weeks?

“Nathan Peteru won’t be far off, and Matty Russell and at the moment maybe Natty Mason. So there may be a couple back in contention over the next week or two.”

Have you had any conversations with Derek about timeframes in terms of how long you might be in the role in this capacity?

“I’ve not had the time to sit down and do that yet. We’re just going to get the Wakefield game out of the way and move forward from there. Whatever decision and the club come to as long as it’s the best for the club that’s all that matters.”

Have you been given the green light by Derek to bring people on board if you’re in a position to do so?

“We’ve spoken about it. We addressed that situation. We are looking, we are going to scour to see what we can bring in as we are down to the bare bones. It’s got to be the right people for moving forward how we want to play and as a club get better.”

Would that be both permanent or loan signings?

“I think it’s difficult at the moment with permanent, but certainly with loan signings and if anything does come about with permanent I’m sure we’ll be looking.”