Wakefield’s Agar holds no grudges on his return to Hull FC

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THE line of questioning is inevitable and predictable.

Richard Agar knows what is coming but does not attempt to sidestep the issue.

One of the first fixtures Hull FC supporters will have looked out for this season was their date with Wakefield Trinity Wildcats at the KC Stadium and the return of their former chief.

And so it follows that there would be similar interest from journalists wanting to know just what his feelings will be ahead of that date which looms large tomorrow.

After all, Agar was ousted, some say harshly, from a role he had held for more than three years to make way for the arrival of Peter Gentle.

New owner Adam Pearson had announced he would not be retained for 2012, ironically enough shortly after a 50-18 success at Castleford on September 3 which had many people believing the Black and Whites were gathering significant momentum ahead of the play-offs.

To the man himself, though, it is a pure irrelevance; he has moved on and there will be no drama in East Yorkshire tomorrow aside from the one he hopes his new Trinity side will provide on the field.

“It’s absolutely not about me,” said Agar.

“Obviously, it’s going to be an angle but I’ll say what I’ve said before in the off-season – I had seven years there (four initially as assistant), loved every minute of it, left on real good terms and made some really close friends.

“It was very easy for me to move on and move on quickly, mainly because I got another job.

“I truly accepted the situation when it came around after that Castleford game, with the talks I had with the owner, so the focus shifted.

“But I think the fact the place has had a big overhaul too and all the people I worked alongside have gone, that made it a little bit easier as well.

“My focus has been really enjoying working here at Wakefield and what we’re trying to build at this club.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it and not for one single moment have I looked back.”

The Hull FC Agar will see tomorrow is certainly far different to the one he left, off the field at least.

Pearson has brought in director of rugby Shaun McRae and Gentle while ex-Castleford assistant Andy Hay has replaced James Webster who followed Agar to Belle Vue.

Of course, chief executive James Rule has also gone following the infamous ‘Gleesongate’ scandal but much of the squad remains, something which is not lost on the erstwhile Airlie Birds chief.

“Of course I went through a difficult period and, having got the squad to probably the best and strongest it’s been for six or seven years, it would have been nice to coach it,” he says.

“But it wasn’t to be and, as we all know in this sport, coaches are hired to be fired.

“I’ve some great memories there and am really proud of some of the stuff I achieved,” he says.

As regards what reaction he will get from the famously vocal and passionate Hull faithful tomorrow, Agar is indifferent.

“I don’t know, don’t care what reception I get,” he says.

“It’s a pantomime isn’t it? Some people will shake my hand, some will give me a boo but it’s really not about me once the game kicks off.

“You come across former teams a lot in this game. I have already done that once this year going to Widnes and this is no different. It’s just about what happens on the pitch,”

On that subject, Agar concedes his side are eager to redeem themselves following a disappointing 36-18 home defeat to Bradford Bulls.

It was a second loss after going down against Hull KR, Trinity’s sole success so far coming at Widnes on the opening night.

He admits: “We felt we let ourselves down last week but if we fix up a couple of glaring errors we’re in with a shout.”

Bradford scored four tries from kicks but Agar maintains that was not the root of his side’s woe against the Bulls last Saturday evening.

“Over 80 minutes, we made eight line breaks and Bradford made one,” he says.

“It is a bit bizarre to only concede one line break yet concede 36 points but the reason was we weren’t good enough defensively in the ruck.

“Having said that, we scored four tries and, for a second week running had another couple ruled out for forward passes.

“With very limited possession, that reaffirmed our belief if we can get our fair share of ball we can produce points.”