Cooke leaves Doncaster Knights to join Leigh Centurions

Paul Cooke (left) is leaving Doncaster Knights

Paul Cooke (left) is leaving Doncaster Knights

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Paul Cooke is leaving Doncaster Knights to become assistant coach at Leigh Centurions.

The former Super League star said the opportunity to return to rugby league was “too good to turn down”.

“Right now I feel the time is right to make the move back into Rugby League,” said ex-Dons player coach Cooke, who crossed codes to become skills and backs coach at the Knights in 2013.

“As everyone knows I have been involved in Rugby League all of my career and I feel the opportunity to join Leigh Centurions as an assistant coach and help the push towards the Super League is an opportunity that I feel is just too good for me to turn down.

“I’d like to thank Clive Griffiths for the last three years’ of guidance under his expert stewardship at Doncaster Knights,” he added.

“I have learned some valuable lessons in coaching and managing professional players from, in my opinion, one of the best coaches around in ether code of rugby.

“His passion, commitment, energy and meticulous planning year on year has been a real lesson in the success and building of his dynasty.

“The players are a joy to work with, they are the real success of 2015/16 and long may that continue.

“I have met some friends for life and will always cherish my memories.

“I wish Clive, Glen [Kenworthy], the coaches, staff and everyone at the Knights all the very best in 2016/17 and beyond, I’ll certainly be back to enjoy some games as a Knights fan.”

Cooke, who played for both Hull clubs and Wakefield, left his position with the Dons by mutual consent a year ago, following the club’s win-less start in the Championship.