Danny Kirmond insists there are no guarantees that 2019 could be his final season as a player – saying he’s got plenty left in the talk as he prepares for his testimonial match this weekend.
The long-serving Wakefield forward’s career will be honoured on Sunday when Trinity face Hull in a game that will double up as both Kirmond’s, and Hull forward Danny Washbrook’s, testimonial fixtures.
Kirmond agreed a one-year deal for 2019 midway through last season – but has stopped short of confirming that this year will be his last with Trinity, telling League Express: “There’s no pressure on myself, and no decision made.
“I know it’s not going to go on forever and there’s the end of the line somewhere down the track, but the body feels good and these injuries which have kept me out for a while could help me go on a bit longer, in the sense of me not playing as many games as maybe I would have otherwise.
“I’ve only played once in six months, so we’ll have a sit down and talk halfway through the year, but I just want to make sure I contribute as much as possible this year.”
Kirmond also believes relinquishing the captaincy to half-back Jacob Miller will also help take a weight off his shoulders.
“There’s a part of me that’s upset to let it go, of course,” he said.
“But I’ve done it a while and it was time to pass it on – I don’t think I’ve played enough to be considered a captain on the field and when you’re out injured, the captain’s armband can weigh heavy on you.
“You have a lot of thinking time and it can burden you somewhat, so it’s nice not to have to worry about that.”
Kirmond joined Wakefield in 2012 at a time when then-coach Richard Agar assembled a squad of players not wanted by other clubs, helping keep Trinity afloat in the process.
Now, with the club in a position to compete for the title in 2019, Kirmond admits Sunday’s testimonial game is a great chance to look back with pride at how far Wakefield have come.
“Richard did an incredible job then,” Kirmond said.
“Everyone talks about the spirit at Wakefield, and it all started with Richard when nobody gave us a chance – and look at us now. We’re keeping our best players, stable off the field and in a real healthy position under Chris Chester.
“This is the best team I’ve ever played in without question, and we can be excited about where we can go this year. Sunday will be a special day; I’ve made no secret of the fact I’m proud to be round here and proud to play for Wakefield – hopefully it’s a real celebration.”