Hull Kingston Rovers underwent a change of management last season with the recently appointed Tony Smith leaving the side mid-season, only to sign on with bitter cross-city rivals Hull FC for 2023.
As such there’s a new man leading the Robins into 2023 and that’s Willie Peters who is stepping into his first role as head coach.
The Robins were overseen by Danny McGuire for the latter part of the season but failed to replicate their early season form and missed the playoffs.
Peters now steps into the role having served as an assistant coach to Wayne Bennett at South Sydney Rabbitohs as well as working alongside some seriously well-respected coaches such as Anthony Seibold and current NSW head coach Brad Fittler.
In comments made to the teams website the rookie head coach talked about the upcoming season and what he’s learned so far.
“I’ve worked with a lot of quality coaches so for me, it was about picking their brain along the way but now it’s about putting what I’ve learnt along the way into what I believe in.”
Despite the fact Peters didn’t arrive in Hull till October he was announced as head coach back in May which meant he was able to work with interim coach, and now assistant coach, McGuire so the Robins already have some form of Peter’s identity among them and will be set for big things in 2023.
Peters said: “It’s been six months in the making for us to get over here, so we’ve been able to build a squad that we believe is going to be extremely competitive. It’s exciting times ahead.
“We finished the year off against Hull FC on a positive note. We want to take that into pre-season – I’m a big believer that pre-season defines who you are in the season. So, we need to come back ready to go and hit the ground running.”
Rovers are currently doing warm-weather training at what they’ve coined Camp Connexion and reports from players such as Frankie Halton relay a positive attitude.
Peters spoke about the difficulty of the transition and having to try to coach from afar but heaped praise on his exciting squad who played some very flashy rugby at times.
“There was a lot of adversity and a lot of challenges for the team and Danny at the time. But what I loved about this team is they never gave up once. We’re going to pride ourselves on effort – world class effort every week and we compete to win in everything we do.
“That means at training we’re competing all the time, in games there’ll be no excuse for not competing with this football team. And I know what the fans want – I’ve spoken to a lot of fans in the last couple of weeks – they just want a football team they can be proud of, that doesn’t give up and competes to the end. I know if we do that, we’ll be in a good place.”