When Hull FC supremo Adam Pearson announced the ‘Club Hull’ ethos following the appointment of Lee Radford 12 months ago, it was certainly met with some skepticism in this camp. The idea of a Super League club pulling together for the good of the community and embracing the ideals of the city is great on paper, but as we have seen in the past campaign, probably means very little in reality.
Unfortunately, that ‘Club Hull’ idea is likely to be challenged even more following the events which are unfolding at the KC Stadium as we speak.
Ben Crooks, 2013’s best young player in Super League, has been allowed to depart for pastures new, a career in the NRL. Admittedly the 21-year-old has struggled to repeat his form of last year, but has he been given a fair crack of the whip?
In his place, if the grapevine is to be believed, is NRL legend and duel code international Timana Tahu, a player of undoubted distinction, but approaching his 34th birthday, not a player with many more scorching runs or big hits left in his game.
Radford refused to confirm or deny the rumours in the Hull Daily Mail, but Tahu certainly fits the bill as the FC coach looks to bring in yet another centre-cum-second-row.
“What I’ll say is I am looking for another Setaimata Sa type of player who can play centre and second row for us,” Radford said whilst at the same time remaining coy about the true identity of the player in question.
Radford’s recruitment for 2015 is certainly following a trend, the acquisition of Leon Pryce, alongside the signing of Sa and other physical units suggests he may be attempting to recreate something of that all-conquering Bradford side of the early 2000s.
It remains disappointing however that the option of bringing in Tahu came about due to the departure of Crooks, a player who if he gets his physique and, maybe more importantly, his head right, could go on to be one of the great English backs, and yet another case of ‘the one who got away’ for long suffering FC fans.