Keighley Cougars have appointed Gary Moorby as their coach in succession to Steve Deakin.

The former Keighley, St Helens and Leeds second-row forward attended his first training session last night, and will be helped by Paul Moses, who has become his assistant.

Moses has been jointly in charge of the team with Alan Boothroyd since Deakin left last month to take over as assistant coach of London Broncos.

Cougars' chairman Neil Spencer said: "Paul and Gary are both keighley lads and have both played with and against each other."

"Gary comes to us with good credentials. He has been in charge of Halifax Blue Sox's Alliance team for the past two seasons, and before that was at Featherstone Rovers under Peter Roe."

Added Spencer: "We realise that, because of our position, we are a stepping stone for coaches to progress to other clubs, but there is nothing we can do about that.

"There is no way - financially or otherwise - that we could have stood in Steve's way, and nor would we have wished to.

"But Gary has his heart in his home-town club, and I know he is hoping to achieve success with us.

"He has already worked with some good people in Steve Ferres, Peter Roe and Steve Linnane, and now we want stability above anything else.

"Obviously we want to climb the table, get into the top nine and play in the First Division next season.

"But we are not in a rush. I know that Gary is keen on youth development, and that is the only way for teams like us in the Northern Ford Premiership to achieve success.

"Now it is a matter of moulding the team, but we have been unlucky with the fixtures.

"We had our match on Boxing Day called off, and then had to go to Huddersfield Giants, and everybody knows what happened there.

"It was a case of a team of part-timers that trains three times a week against an outfit who have just dropped down from the Super League, have kept the vast majority of their players and have remained full time.

"And when you get teams that come down from Super League against a side like ours there is only one outcome."

Added Spencer: "But people should remember that we have only had one match at home."