Castleford have appointed former Hull head coach Lee Radford as their successor to Daryl Powell.
The 42-year-old former Hull and Bradford forward, who was sacked by the Black and Whites just over 12 months ago, will take up a two-year deal with the Tigers from the start of the 2022 season.
Powell is leaving Castleford at the end of the year to take over from Steve Price at Warrington and is expected to take his assistant Ryan Sheridan with him.
Radford last summer agreed to join American rugby union team Dallas Jackals as defence coach, but the impact of the coronavirus pandemic prevented him from taking up the role.
He said: “I’m really excited for the opportunity with a fantastic club and I’m really looking forward to taking up the challenge.
“I like what the club is about. From the outside it is a hardworking, honest, hard-faced club and I think you know what you’re getting when you come here – I think all those descriptions suit me down to the ground.
“I’m very aware of the brand of rugby that is played at this ground and it’s one I’m looking forward to having an effect on as well.
“How they play the brand of rugby they play here, I’ve always enjoyed watching it from the outside, I’ve always enjoyed coming up against it and trying to stop it.”
Radford joined the backroom team of his home-town club in 2011, was appointed as head coach two years later and in 2016 ended the club’s Wembley hoodoo with a Challenge Cup victory over Warrington.
He helped the Black and Whites retain their trophy with a win over Wigan and is now determined to bring long-awaited silverware to Castleford, who were runners-up at both Wembley and Old Trafford under Powell.
“The job Daryl has done has been great over the years,” Radford said. “As a club they have been in that tier of the best of the rest behind a Wigan and Saints and ultimately trying to break that ceiling is going to be what the challenge is.
“I wouldn’t be coming here if I didn’t have aspirations to break that ceiling of what is the top couple of sides in the competition at the moment. That is something we will be working tirelessly as a club and as a group to achieve.”
Castleford chairman Ian Fulton said: “We are thrilled to welcome Lee Radford as our head coach from the 2022 season on a two-year contract.
“Appointing our next head coach has been an incredibly extensive process with applicants from both codes of rugby applying for the position and we as a board of directors are delighted to have secured Lee’s services.
“He has already begun his work at identifying players for both retention and recruitment in 2022.
“Everyone at Castleford remains focused on the current task at hand in 2021 with our first team squad and head coach Daryl Powell, who we would love to see end his time with the Tigers on a deserved high note.”