‘I certainly left it in a better state than what I took it over in’ – Widnes Vikings’ John Kear defends Bradford Bulls stint after disappointing 2022

NEW Widnes Vikings head coach John Kear has defended his stint at the Bradford Bulls, despite enduring a difficult 2022 Championship season at Odsal.

The Bulls finished outside the Championship play-offs with Kear leaving the club during last season after four straight defeats.

Kear had been head coach at Odsal since 2018 – when he secured promotion back to the Championship at the first time of asking courtesy of a play-off final victory over Workington Town.

The former Wakefield Trinity and Hull FC head coach led the Bulls to a famous Challenge Cup win over Leeds Rhinos in 2019 and in 2021 helped Bradford to their best finish in the table for six years.

Now Kear has defended his time at Bradford, highlighting the complete contrast in fortunes at the club when he joined to when he left.

“There’s a number of reasons why it perhaps didn’t end as well I’d have wanted,” Kear told League Express.

“One of my goals when I take a job is to leave the club in a better position than it was in when I started.

“I took the Bradford job when they were in League One, playing against Hemel Hempstead on a park pitch and I certainly left it in a better state than what I took it over in.

“It was sustainable financially as well so I can look myself in the mirror about what I contributed at Bradford and I will let other people decide what they want to from that.”

Now Kear is head coach of Widnes, aiming to take the Vikings into the Championship play-offs for the first time since being relegated back in 2018.

The Welsh national boss has brought in the likes of Kyle Amor, Jordan Johnstone and Tom Gilmore ahead of what promises to be one of the most exciting Championship seasons in recent years.