Diskin "reluctantly" takes over

Hampshire Chronicle: Matt Diskin has reluctantly taken charge of the Bulls Matt Diskin has reluctantly taken charge of the Bulls

Bradford captain Matt Diskin has condemned the Bulls for sacking head coach Francis Cummins and his assistant Lee St Hilaire.

The 32-year-old hooker, who has reluctantly agreed to take over as caretaker player-coach until the club make a permanent appointment, took to Twitter to make clear his unhappiness over their decision to axe the coaches in the aftermath of Sunday's 46-18 defeat at Salford.

In a statement issued by the club, Diskin said he would ensure the players would be properly prepared to face Hull KR in their next Super League match at Odsal on Friday night while insisting that he had no desire to keep the job long term.

Diskin then tweeted: " Following the club's press release, on my behalf I would like to add the following: We have to respect the board's decision regarding the dismissal of Francis and Lee.

"Saying that, we don't have to agree with it and personally I think it is the wrong decision in regards to the club's long-term future.

"The facts are that we are in a results-based industry and, as a group of players, we have not transferred the skills, game plans and attitude that is of a high standard on the training field into our competitive games.

"This is something the some of most successful coaches in the world would struggle to remedy.

"The players are ultimately at fault and should shoulder the blame for the club's league position.

"My role as coach until a new one arrives is a responsibility I have reluctantly accepted and have the encouragement of both Francis and Lee for which I'm greatly appreciative."

Diskin has taken charge under the guidance of managing director Steve Ferres as Bradford begin the search for Cummins' successor.

Former Bulls coach Brian Noble, out of work since being sacked by Salford in April, has been linked with the vacancy and another former player and hooker, James Lowes, who is on a rolling contract as head coach of rugby union side Leeds Carnegie, admitted he is interested in the job.

"I'd like to at least sit down and talk with (owner) Marc Green to hear his plans," Lowes said. "That would be the first step and it would be nice to meet with the bloke."

Lowes, 44, who was briefly head coach of Warrington in 2008-09, applied for the Bradford job when Australian Mick Potter was appointed as the successor to Steve McNamara ahead of the 2011 season.

"I didn't even get a reply to my application, which was very disappointing and left a sour taste," he said. "But it's obviously a job I'd love to do whether it's now or in the future. It's Bradford Bulls - it's my club."

Lowes was at the heart of Bradford's success at the start of Super League, when they were crowned champions four times in nine years and twice won the Challenge Cup.

John Kear, who famously kept Wakefield in Super League in 2006 and is currently coaching Batley on a part-time basis, and former Bradford player and current Dewsbury coach Glenn Morrison are also possible candidates.

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