COACHES | Royce Simmons

171 matches [1994-2001]

70 wins, 97 losses, 4 draws


Simmons was a former captain and a skilful hooker who played in a then club record 233 first grade matches for the Panthers when he retired after the 1991 premiership triumph.

After coaching stints with St Marys in the third-tier Metropolitan Cup and at Hull FC in England, he returned to Penrith.

Simmons was appointed caretaker late in the 1994 season when Phil Gould quit, and soon after was appointed full time coach.

The first two full seasons had a less than 50% win/loss record, but the Panthers made a finals appearance in the one and only Super League season in 1997.

A second finals appearance under his watch was achieved by way of fifth placed finish in 2000, but fortunes dramatically nose dived the following season, getting the club’s third wooden spoon. On the back of that, he was sacked at season’s end and would be replaced by John Lang.

His 171 matches at the helm remained a club record for a coach until he was surpassed by Ivan Cleary in 2021.

He later was an assistant coach to Tim Sheens at the Wests Tigers and for Australia, and also returned to head coaching with a 2 season stint with English club St. Helens.

He has since returned to Penrith as an official. 

Last updated 7 December 2022

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