Relegation is more than just feeling a bit down
HULL KR’s return to Super League is a great achievement – but relegation has implications that must be addressed.
The main one is that players’ contracts are currently null and void the minute their club drops out of the top flight, leaving them jobless overnight.
A lot of players still got deals at Hull KR or other clubs, but I’ve been forced to say, ‘We haven’t a contract for you’ and it’s not nice.
An example of that last year was Kevin Larroyer, who ended up with nothing until Castleford picked him up months later.
Players can go from a very good income to nothing overnight – and there are very few full-time playing opportunities in this country.
I would like to see a rule implemented that guarantees a player 50 per cent of his Super League contract for another year. That option would be available to the player for a month after relegation and allow him to look elsewhere, after which both parties can walk away if they wanted.
Experiencing promotion by beating Widnes last week (left) was the opposite in emotions from relegation in the Million Pound Game a year earlier.
It went from tears of desperation to crying for joy for some players.
I felt more subdued because I know another Super League club is going to be going through the same turmoil soon and I remember how that felt.