Tetley's Challenge Cup: Daryl Powell wary of a Danny McGuire backlash at Wembley
Last Updated: 20/08/14 2:42pm
Danny McGuire will have a chance to gain revenge on his old Leeds boss when he runs out for his fourth Challenge Cup final against Daryl Powell's Castleford on Saturday.
Powell was in charge of the Rhinos in 2003 when he left the 20-year-old out of the team to play Bradford at the Millennium Stadium, despite McGuire scoring two sensational tries as a substitute in their semi-final win over St Helens.
Powell opted to play experienced Australian Andrew Dunemann alongside skipper Kevin Sinfield in the halves, with Rob Burrow taking McGuire's spot on the bench.
Somebody has got to miss out. It's very tough for a coach but you do it for the right reason for the team.
Powell on McGuire
Leeds went on to lose 22-20 to a Bulls side that included Jamie Peacock in their pack and are still searching for their first cup final success since 1999.
Powell's Tigers are standing in their way and the former Great Britain international knows it could be payback time for McGuire after he took what he describes as "the tricky decision" to leave him on the sidelines 11 years ago.
"He knows why I did it and I tried to explain at the time but it wasn't the best thing I've ever done in terms of communication," Powell said.
"But Danny has used it as a stepping stone for him across his career. Kevin Sinfield also got left out of one early on in his career.
"Somebody has got to miss out. It's very tough for a coach but you do it for the right reason for the team."
Powell, who was in the Leeds team that last lifted the trophy at Wembley 15 years ago, held the post of head coach for less than three years before making way for the arrival of Tony Smith.
Just 35 when he succeeded Australian Dean Lance in the Headingley hot seat, Powell himself took the decision to step down, although in hindsight he admits he probably acted prematurely.
"I think there is a lot of misconception about how it finished," he said. "I decided to step down, it was my decision alone, I wasn't pushed to one side in any way, shape or form.
"A lot of things have been said that were completely wrong. I have no problems with how it finished.
"It was my first year out of playing and the culture needed changing. There were quite a lot of players who needed to leave the club in order to refresh it and there were quite a lot of young players coming through the system who needed to step up.
"I just felt at that time it was a good chance to step out and have a good look around. If I look back on it now, I would probably have gone on another year but you can't change what's happened.
"Obviously in my last year we got to the Challenge Cup final, just lost it, and then lost by a point to Wigan in a final eliminator, so we were very close.
"That's history. Once I make a decision, I don't look back."