Championship club make coaching appointment after shock exit

Keighley Cougars announced this week that they have parted company with head coach Rhys Lovegrove with immediate effect as confirmed on the club’s Facebook page.

CEO Ryan O’Neill said: “We would like to thank Rhys for his commitment and service to the club and it is disappointing that results have not reflected the hard work and commitment that he has undoubtedly shown. He leaves with our very best wishes.”

Rhys Lovegrove said: “Having been at the club 4 years it has been a honour and privilege to lead the club as head coach. I would like to thank the performance staff, some often going above and beyond, and the players and I wish all concerned the very best for the future.”

Assistant Coach and Jamaica International, Jy-mel Coleman will take over as head coach on an interim basis with the support of Jordie Hedges, Dean Muir and Jake Webster who steps up as Director of Rugby.

It was a shock with the Cougars having a relatively strong start to the season despite being newly promoted.

They have let go of star signing Luke Gale as the former Castleford Tigers and Leeds Rhinos star headed to Wakefield Trinity.

Despite this, they are five points clear of relegation and sit ninth just two points outside the play-off spots.

Nonetheless, the club have undoubtedly been rocked by the IMG vote which they warned could impact their ambition and their ability to pump funds into the club.

The club have now confirmed that Cougars ‘legend’ James Feather will link up with Keighley’s new look coaching team.

2022 Invincible Buster was the first person interim head coach Jy-mel Coleman called upon for assistance during this transitional period.

Interim head coach Jy-mel Coleman said “It was really important and a top priority for me to bring Buster in to the coaching group. He offers a wealth of experience and of course, like myself, he is a Keighley lad and cares deeply about the club. He will be a great motivator for this group and I believe he will set high standards and inspire this team.”

“Buster is among a group of people who achieved something special with the club, not only last year, but he understands what it means to play for the club. I am sure him being around the place more often helps this playing group understand what it means to play Rugby League in a Keighley shirt.”

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