Neil Kelly makes return as Dewsbury coach

Former Super League Coach of the Year Neil Kelly has returned to Dewsbury as head coach, 16 years after leaving the club.

Kelly, 54, was in charge at the Tetley’s Stadium between 1996 and 2001, before leaving for Widnes, who he led to promotion to Super League and a seventh place finish in their first season back in the top flight, earning him the top coach honour.

He left Widnes in 2004 and was in charge at Leigh between 2008 and 2010, as well as working in rugby union with Doncaster and the Namibia and Romania national teams.

During his time at Dewsbury, Kelly led them to victory in the 2000 NFP Grand Final, two League Leaders Shields and a Trans-Pennine Cup trophy.

Rams chairman Mark Sawyer said: “There was an excellent calibre of application, and a good set of interviews, so for Neil to get the position shows how highly-regarded he is.

“The situation we are in at this present moment is extremely similar to when Neil took over as coach for his first spell, and he achieved a lot in difficult circumstances.

“He has a lot of experience at our level and since then has been involved at an extremely high level of coaching in both codes of rugby.

“His enthusiasm for Dewsbury Rugby League Football Club, and for taking on this job, has been enormous, and he is clearly somebody of whom the fans already have fond memories.

“Neil understands the nature of the challenge ahead, including the difficulties we are currently facing with injuries, and he’s willing to risk his reputation on succeeding.”

Kelly’s brother Andy was Dewsbury coach between 2004 and 2008.

The Rams had been looking for a new coach following the departure of Glenn Morrison last month after five years.

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