Hull coach Lee Radford unsure whether central contracts could create chasm

Hull FC coach Lee Radford admits he’s fearful of whether the RFL’s policy on central contracts could make the bigger clubs even more powerful.

It emerged this week that the sport’s governing body are interested in tying down a number of players to deals which would give them a £25,000 bonus in return for several days of promotional work a year.

Hull do not have any players on that list, however, and Radford believes that the policy, while positive in helping to retain talent, could act as a negative for less financially powerful clubs.

He said: “If it keeps players from going to the NRL or rugby union and we can get our players more money then brilliant. But I do believe we can’t just be sporadic – ‘you get one but not you’.

“The clubs that have been given them are powerful clubs. Is it not just making them more powerful and does it not hurt the likes of Wakefield and lesser-financially secure clubs?”

Radford also believes it would be fairer for all clubs to have the chance to have a centrally-contracted player, not just the chosen few.

He added: “I’ve had no information regards it (central contracts). If you are going to give it out then make it even and either one or two per club as, at the moment, we have two at one club, one at another, some haven’t any. What’s the criteria, who selects?

“It’s a great opportunity to say ‘let’s renew him, let’s lengthen him and let’s get 25k from the RFL. We’ll split it with you – we’ll knock 12-and-a-half of your contract and you can have the rest.’ Genius. If so, can we do Danny Houghton, Jamie Shaul and Scott Taylor and get some money for them? That would be nice.”