FORMER Super League and international representative player Richard Moore has agreed to assist Keighley Albion in their open age training sessions in 2020.

Keighley-born Moore made more than 350 appearances for 10 clubs across the Super League, the Championship and League One - in a 17-year professional career.

Starting his career as an Under-8s Cougar Cubs junior, the 38-year-old is a perfect and contemporary example as to what Keighley juniors can go on to achieve in the sport.

The Keighley Albion committee has made no qualms that it wants to have a strong and competitive open age team from 2020, and see Moore's involvement with the open age side as a major coup, as he brings his vast experience and professionalism to the club.

Rob Spencer, Committee member, said: “Our junior section is thriving at Keighley Albion, not only are we the biggest participation club in the Yorkshire Junior League, but we are also on the radar of several professional teams, with no fewer than 10 players progressing from Albion and now playing in the professional rugby. Two of which, Jack Croft and Lee Kershaw, are now playing for Wakefield Trinity’s first team in the Super League.

"Attention is now firmly on strengthening the open age, and with several members of our 2019 Continuation Cup and League-winning u18s team ready to progress, along with our current squad of senior players and ex-professionals, we are looking to recruit a coaching team to galvanise this squad.

"We see Richards involvement as a massive step towards this, and a real statement of intent. The committee are striving for the club to be competing at the pinnacle of the amateur game.”

Moore made his professional debut in 2002, and retired earlier in 2019 following a serious head injury playing for Hunslet.

He was a graduate of the Leeds Rhinos academy, dubbed as the ‘Golden Generation’, which boasted infamous players such as Danny McGuire, Rob Burrows, Jamie-Jones Buchanan and Ryan Bailey. He would burst onto the Super League scene in 2001, debuting for Bradford as a rising front-row star, being a member of the Bradford Bulls squad that won the 2003 Super League and Challenge Cups, before moving onto London Broncos and Leigh Centurions after a seven-match loan spell with Keighley Cougars in 2002.

He moved to Wakefield Trinity, where he played between 2007-2009. Under John Kear's guidance they became a top Super League side. In 2008 they would reach the Challenge Cup semi-finals, before a fifth-placed finish in 2009.

While at Wakefield, Moore was recognised for international honours, playing for a Northern Union XIII against the New Zealand All Golds, in a tour match to commemorate the centenary of rugby league in New Zealand. The game at the Halliwell Jones Stadium, finished 25-18 to the All Golds. Moore was also involved in a 2007 Great Britain train-on squad under coach Tony Smith.

Following a brief spell at North Wales Crusaders, Moore would re-sign for Leeds Rhinos, where he was a member of Brian McDermott's 2012 Super League-winning squad.

Alongside a second spell with Wakefield, Moore began life in the Championship with Halifax, in 2015, and signed for Featherstone prior to the start of 2017. He went on to make 45 appearances for Rovers, as well as being club captain, becoming a fans' favourite over his two-year spell at the LD Nutrition Stadium.

He finished he career at Hunslet. In an earlier loan spell at the club, he was a member of the team who won the 2014 Championship One Grand Final at Headingley.

But Moore's work commitments will somewhat restrict his availability periodically throughout the season, and the club is recruiting for more open age coaching staff, including a head coach to lead our ambitious and progressive club's open age team.

In line with Albion's ambitions, for the first time the club is open to negotiating payment terms with the right head coach candidate, including expenses and win/loss payments.

Meanwhile, Albion's Transatlantic partnership with California Youth Rugby League (CRL) has kicked off.

The CRL had their inaugural game earlier this month with San Francisco Savage beat LA Mongrel 58-12.

Albion assisted the promotion of the game by heavily featuring the build-up on their social media channels and hosted a link for an 'International Watch Party' on our clubs Facebook page.

Closer to home, Albion's 2020 main club sponsor will be A1 Stairlift Services.

The two-year sponsorship agreement will continue until the end of the 2021 campaign, with a view to extending for a further season.

A1 Stairlift Services, an independent Keighley-based company, have an unprecedented history when it comes to supporting and giving back to the Keighley community.

Company directors, Simon Harrison and Robert Dunne, are no strangers to Keighley Albion, as not only have they sponsored teams in previous seasons, both directors are also former club players.

Harrison said: "On behalf of Robert Dunne and myself, we are pleased and privileged to be able to sponsor our local amateur rugby league club Keighley Albion as their main sponsors for the next few years.

"This will hopefully help with the finances to assist them in encouraging young boys & girls to play for a club that shaped both myself and Bob, both on and off the field.”

Albion has a number of other sponsorship opportunities and packages that can benefit businesses looking for exposure.

For more information, call Rob Spencer on 07894 957514.