Kelly pays tribute to ‘brilliant’ club

Departing coach Neil Kelly has paid tribute to Dewsbury Rams.
Departing coach Neil Kelly has paid tribute to Dewsbury Rams.

Departing coach Neil Kelly has paid tribute to Dewsbury Rams and has described them as the blueprint for clubs at Championship level.

Kelly announced he was stepping down as Rams coach following 18 months at the helm.

Kelly masterminded Dewsbury’s survival in 2017 and has again ensured the club will remain in the Championship next season.

It is understood the Rams have received around 40 applications for the coaching position and Kelly believes whoever takes over will be working for a fantastic club.

Speaking after his final game in charge, which saw the Rams run out 52-6 winners over a depleted Leigh Centurions, Kelly said: “Everything I have done or said has been for the good of Dewsbury, even if it has been sparking off a debate about the way forward for the club.

“I have been here since 1982, that’s when I made by debut, and there are some people here who have been here since before that.

“Its not about supporters, coaches and players, its about friendships.

“Throughout all this year and especially a difficult last third of the season I have had lots of supporters who have given me their personal support and I really appreciate that and won’t forget it.

“I think this is a brilliant club and should be the blueprint for clubs of this size.

“It’s not for the near future going to be a St Helens, Wigan or Leeds and clubs of that nature but it has got great facilities, its own stadium and all the facilities it needs.

“It has training facilities coming out of its ears, its got weight rooms that the club are looking to develop over the next 18 months and it is a brilliant club.

“I think the game should be proud of what clubs like Dewsbury and Batley have got to offer but its seems quite the opposite and they are seen as something of a burden.”

Kelly will take time away from the sport but has not ruled out a return to coaching in the future.

He added: “I think its common knowledge now that I have issues in my private life that I need to sort out.

“Hopefully they will work out in the way I think everybody would want them to work out and, if in two months time we are in a situation where we can out that side of things on the back burner, then I’ll be looking for a job.”