Hull FC triallist Eldon Myers explained the frustrating circumstances that blocked a permanent move to the club, while reaffirming his intention to pursue a career in the sport.
The 24-year-old, who works as a personal trainer in the Navy, had given impressive performances against Halifax, London Broncos and Batley Bulldogs in friendly games, with the Black and Whites subsequently tabling a two-year contract.
That all came less than a year after Myers had impressed former Hull coach Lee Radford in a UK Armed Forces Rugby League guest appearance against GB Teachers, as he crossed for a try in a 22-0 victory, which prompted Radford to offer Myers a trial on the spot.
Despite the former Billingham and West Hartlepool rugby union player admitting to not even knowing who Radford was, he quickly adapted to the 13-man code and had laid solid foundations to follow the trend of fellow serviceman Ratu Naulago, who had signed for Hull a year earlier. But he has now had to put on hold his plans to succeed in the professional game.
“The decision was made by the Navy to delay my trial until November because I could have the full pre-season then,” Myers told League Express.
“I haven’t had communication with Hull since Radford got sacked, because I know they’ve got a lot to worry about. But when I first got offered the two-year deal, we were under the assumption that the Navy already had everything in place.
“The decision came that it was going to be rejected and we thought we could appeal and sort out the formalities. The Navy said there was a ‘manning issue’ in my branch. They told me that they couldn’t justify releasing me to a professional sports team because my job role was potentially being altered.
“I then found a loophole because, if a six-month or lower contract was offered, I could get my captain to certify the period of leave. I got straight on the phone to Hull and got a contract until the end of the season drawn up and it was verbally agreed at both ends.
“Then at the eleventh hour, the captain of my base didn’t want to undermine those above him who made the initial call on my two-year contract rejection. I was waiting for this decision and it was putting me in a bad place.
“I was watching all these Super League games and thought I’d be involved in the next one or the next one.
“While I was at Hull FC, it was class. I was used to the intense training, because of the course I had to pass to become a PTI in the Navy. I was used to doing that until 8pm with the Navy and the likes of Ratu and Josh Griffin who had played rugby union, were a great help for me. I couldn’t wait to get started.
“Right now I’d love to get offered something else for next season. I’m open to all offers. I’m 24-years-old now and I’ve just been offered my first professional contract in sport. I’ll see how this pans out, but I feel like now is the chance to try and chase my dreams in the game.”