Great to see my old Hull FC boss Lee Radford back in the game with Castleford Tigers – Gareth Ellis

It’s really good to see Lee Radford back in rugby league.

Jungle beat: Lee Radford is Castleford Tigers new coach from next season. Picture by Melanie Allatt Photography

We had some really good times at Hull FC under him and probably it was just the length of his stay that was the reason why it just dwindled as it did; if you stay around long enough, you’re going to have some good times and some bad times.

It ended in an unfortunate way last year but that’s not to say he wasn’t a good coach.

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So it’s really good to see him back in the game as Castleford Tigers head coach for 2022.

Rising star: Tigers' Jake Trueman. Picture Bruce Rollinson

It’s a funny one for Radders as it’s not like he is taking over somewhere where someone’s done a bad job and he’s coming in to pick up the pieces like is often the case.

He’s taking over from Daryl Powell who’s got such a good name at the club and has done so well with Cas over the last eight years now.

He has some big shoes to fill and a big part of it for Radders will be keeping some of their key individuals – people like Paul McShane and Jake Trueman

That will probably be his first and foremost challenge give he has a few months to prepare for it at the club first and foremost.

Stay or go? Castleford hooker Paul McShane. Picture by Alex Whitehead/

McShane and Trueman will be the ones who people talk about possibly going on to pastures new in 2022. It’s what frame of mind they are in as people; are they happy at Cas or is Daryl the big part of why they are at Cas?

They might think with a new coach coming in is it time for them to change. That’s a decision for them to make.

But I’m sure Radders will be doing his utmost to try and keep them at the club.

For his age, Trueman is probably the best English half in the country at the moment and we spoke about McShane a few columns ago and how influential he is to Cas.

As for Radders, he’s had 13 months away from the game and that will have given him some time for self-reflection; when you’re in the sport and you go week to week on games it’s sometimes difficult to get that opportunity to reflect and assess what you’re doing and whether it’s working or not.

You don’t get chance to look at what you can do better. But the amount of time Radders has had off will have given him time to explore a few different avenues. He’s been down the rugby union route which might have taken him off at a bit of a tangent to what he feels about certain areas of rugby league and how to manage things.

Hopefully he’ll go into the Cas job with some new ideas about what worked for him before and what didn’t – and become an even better coach on the back of that.

I know some Cas fans have questioned Radders’ style, saying it’s five drives and a kick.

But I don’t see that. All coaches – whether the most flamboyant or most conservative – have an element of knowing that errors are costly and you need to limit them as much as posible.

Radders always encouraged us to play with the opportunities we had. All coaches will say if you are going to pass, pass to someone in a better position, but don’t make errors. That’s just the way all coaches coach.

For me, everyone plays the same; it’s just some teams have better players that can execute those passes under pressure better than others.