Dib hints at ex-Dogs player as NRL coach

Sep 27, 2017 - 6:13 AM Canterbury chairman Ray Dib has vowed to bring former Bulldogs players back into the fold in an effort to re-find the NRL club's famed culture.

A day after the club reportedly met with premiership-winners Dean Pay and Jim Dymock, Dib penned a letter to members outlining the club's plans to return ex-players to Canterbury after the sacking of coach Des Hasler.

The Bulldogs' last Dally M Medal winner, Michael Potter, has also been linked to the club as an assistant.

The appointment of any ex-Bulldogs would go a long way to appeasing fans and former players ahead of next February's board election, where Dib could face opposition from a potential rebel ticket led by Paul Dunn.

Members of the 2004 premiership-winning team Willie Mason and Reni Maitua last week bemoaned the club's culture under Hasler, following in the footsteps of club legends Steve Mortimer and Terry Lamb last year.

Mason and Maitua both urged the board to appoint a former Bulldog as coach ahead of sacked South Sydney mentor Michael Maguire, who they feared would continue a split from the club's traditional culture.

And on Wednesday, Dib told fans a return to the club's heritage would be part of the new strategic direction of the club.

"Above all, we want to bring back the Bulldogs' spirit of old," Dib wrote.

"Part of that process will be the re-engagement of past players and reconnecting with our traditions and history."

The Bulldogs endured a disastrous year on and off the field, leading to their first pre-finals exit since Hasler's arrival in 2012.

Salary cap mismanagement has also led to captain James Graham being released from his contract, while fan favourite Josh Reynolds has also departed for the Wests Tigers.

Chief executive Raelene Castle also quit, leaving the club without a CEO until Rugby League World Cup boss Andrew Hill arrives.

Dib expected to have a replacement for Hasler announced well before Hill starts in December.

"We are now in the process of starting an interview process to find a new head coach. We have identified several candidates and will interview them in the coming weeks," Dib said.

"In terms of a timeframe we hope to make an announcement in the next 2-4 weeks."

The Bulldogs chairman also reaffirmed his belief that Kiwi representative five-eighth Kieran Foran would join fellow recruit Aaron Woods at the club, despite Hasler's sacking.

Source: AAP

No one has shouted yet.
Be the first!