Danny Orr must succeed at Castleford, says Paul Cullen

Last Updated: 11/04/13 11:04am

Interim coach Danny Orr must be given every chance to succeed at Castleford for the long-term good of Super League, says Paul Cullen.

Cullen took charge of the Tigers this week after predecessor Ian Millward was sacked following a disastrous run in which the side lost nine out of 11 Super League games.

"I really hope someone is in there looking after Danny and the knowledge he has got from our game for the long term."

Paul Cullen

Castleford chief executive Steve Gill is happy to put his faith in Orr, 34, for the immediate future - starting with Saturday's home clash with Widnes.

But Cullen told Boots 'n' All that the wider game has a responsibility to ensure that Orr swims rather than sinks in his new role.

"I feel a little bit for Danny Orr," admitted Cullen.

"I really hope that someone at Castleford, maybe within the game of rugby league at headquarters, is going to embark on 'Project Danny Orr' because we've got to keep players - especially half-backs with all the knowledge that he has from playing the game - and help them take that knowledge into the coaching arena.

"If I think back to iconic half-backs of my generation - Andy Gregory, Ellery Hanley, Shaun Edwards, Mike Ford, Bobby Goulding - their knowledge isn't available to us anymore for a variety of reasons.

"In the modern game, Paul Sculthorpe and Andy Farrell were the intelligent half-backs who were at the cutting end of that kind of thinking process and, latterly, Sean Long.

"Who is going to make sure that Lee Briers' knowledge and talent - and that of Kevin Sinfield when he his Leeds career is finished - is not going to be lost to the game? Danny Orr fits into that category.

"I really hope someone is in there looking after him and the knowledge he has got from our game for the long term."


Fellow Boots pundit Shaun McRae - who took over as Hull FC's director of rugby in 2012 after a three-year spell at Salford City Reds - said that he feels some sympathy for Millward.

But he acknowledged that the chances of Millward staying at Castleford were always going to be slim after a run that produced just one win in 18 games since the club beat Huddersfield last July.

"As a coach you recognise very early on in your career that it is a results driven industry, and all sport is," he said.

"If you are not getting the results, unfortunately you seem to be the one who gets pushed further and further out and you feel like there is no-one around you supporting you.

"That's how I perceived Ian over the last few weeks. It just seemed like he was copping it from everybody because you are an easy target as a coach.

"At the same time there is an accountability and there is a responsibility and the coach is the person that has that on his shoulders and you accept that when you sign your contract.

"The results haven't been good enough - I'm sure Ian would admit that - and there will be circumstances behind that but were not necessarily au fait with all of that.

"When they beat Leeds and had the draw with Catalans, I think everybody at Castleford thought 'you know what, we've got a team here'.

"It just hasn't quite worked out. They've been a little bit unlucky in some of the games and there have been a couple of blow-out scores.

"It's time for them to move on."

You can watch Castleford react to Ian Millward's departure when they take on Widnes this Saturday at 4.30pm on Sky Sports 1 HD.