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Robbie Hunter-Paul excited by new Bradford Bulls role
Robbie Hunter-Paul will become the Bulls’ new chief executive following the club’s dramatic change of ownership.
The Odsal legend returned to his spiritual home in the position of deputy director at the end of June.
After Omar Khan and Gerry Sutcliffe relinquished control of the Bulls yesterday, leaving BedzRus boss Mark Moore and Ryan Whitcut to take the reins, Hunter-Paul has been given an elevated role.
The 37-year-old will take the title of chief executive in a job he was originally earmarked for when he first came back to the club earlier this year.
New co-owners Moore and Whitcut assume hands-on roles on a day-to-day basis and Roy Davison will serve as assistant commercial director and report to Hunter-Paul.
The change of ownership is subject to Rugby Football League approval but Hunter-Paul said: “When I first sat down with the club, and Ryan was a part of those discussions, it was about me coming in and learning the culture of the organisation and seeing what I could bring to the party.
“It was then about seeing if I could take that position on to the next level and that is the role of chief operating officer.
“As the pinnacle and face of the club, I think it’s important that the position is a strong one with the responsibilities to go with it.
“I’m excited about it and I don’t need to even mention the passion I have for the Bulls because it’s so well documented. I’m trying to bring the club back to where it belongs and it’s exciting.”
Football and media manager Stuart Duffy will continue to work alongside head coach Francis Cummins in the football department, while Moore and Whitcut will form a two-man board of directors.
Hunter-Paul said: “The two joint-chairmen will be very hands-on and take control of certain segments of the business.
“I will obviously share my thoughts as well as to how the structure of the board is going to come together and how they will potentially be encouraged by new investment.”
Hunter-Paul believes Cummins will benefit from his long and successful playing career.
The New Zealander said: “I think the luxury that Franny has with someone like me in charge is that I understand about coaching structures.
“I can say to the likes of Mark and Ryan about things such as injuries within the squad and ‘okay guys, take these into account because they actually have a massive impact on how the team is performing’.
“There are not a lot of clubs in Super League who can say that and I think that’s one of the strengths that I bring to the table as well.
“But my job, first and foremost, is to continue growing the commercial and communication side of the organisation.”
Cummins and his players were informed yesterday about the departure of Khan and Sutcliffe.
The Bulls coach paid tribute to the pair, saying: “I think they should be applauded for saving the club and having a go because when Omar signed on that dotted line, it was within a few hours of going out of business.
“It takes a certain kind of person to do what Omar and Gerry have done and other people at the club too.
“Did we honestly believe that as soon as they took over that we would be returning to the good old days? No, I don’t think we did, and there are going to have to be some other people who play a big part in that too.
“But Omar and Gerry have certainly played their part and it’s now being passed on to someone else to carry it on.
“I had a good relationship with Gerry and Omar and I’m sure that will continue with Mark and Ryan.”
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