DONCASTER Rugby League Club are aiming to stand tall in next season’s Championship One campaign and they are hoping that new signing Paul Cook is the man to help them do it.
The club unveiled the 6’ 4” tall half-back at a press conference at the Keepmoat Stadium yesterday afternoon.
The 30-year-old stand-off, who has turned out for both Hull clubs and Wakefield, has always played in the top flight but told The Star that he is relishing playing for the club in the game’s third tier.
“I know a couple of the boys in the squad who come from Hull and I’m looking forward to meeting the rest of the players and forging new friendships,” said Cook. “Hopefully I can teach one or two of the younger players in the squad what it takes to play at the top level.
“I’ve just had my first look at the stadium and I’m impressed and I can’t wait to get out there playing for Doncaster. “
Added Cook, who will also work three days a week for the club’s community department: “It will be the first time I have played at Championship level but I will be doing my homework on the opposition, just like I did when I was full-time, even though I will be part-time with Doncaster.”
“It just shows how far the club have come in the last two years since it was taken over that we are able to attract a player of Paul’s calibre.” said Dons head coach Tony Miller.
“I’d like to thank everyone who has made it possible for us to sign Paul - the local businesses and the supporters who have all dug deep and pledged money during what are difficult economic times to make it happen. Chief executive Carl Hall has also worked tirelessly to get him to the club.
“He’s been out of the game for a year and he had a lot of off-field problems which have been well documented. But he’s in a good state of mind and he wants to do well for the club both on and off the field and I’ve no doubt that he’ll be a major success for us.
“I thought that we lacked a leader last season and Paul has got good leadership skills and I’m sure he’ll prove a massive signing for us.
“He’s been doing some running and he’ll train with us tonight where I will assess his fitness, but he won’t be involved in Sunday’s friendly against Hunslet.”
Said Cook: “I’ll be training with the team three nights a week and I’ll also be doing some extra fitness work both on my own and with conditioner Pete Bell.”