BRADFORD Salem’s Chairman of Rugby, Chris Robinson, has admitted that the time may have not been right for the club to add Super League legend Francis Cummins to their working team.

In June, the local rugby union side confirmed the appointment of the former Bradford Bulls’ head coach as their new Rugby Development Officer, a part-time role that would see Cummins look to push the sport within the local community.

However, the 47-year-old was recently hired by Hull FC as the club’s new Head of Emerging Talent, with his new job starting on Monday at the University of Hull.

Discussing the impact of Cummins’ move to Hull, Robinson said: “The first thing I want to say is good luck to Francis with his new role at Hull FC; I think the timing of him joining Salem just wasn’t quite right. We’ve got an open mind with how we might want to add value to the Rugby Development Officer role in the future, but for now Francis’ attention will firmly be on his new job at Hull in the Super League.”

Another former Super League star Suaia Matagi has been plying his trade with Bradford Salem in recent weeks, as he looks to maintain his fitness in the rugby league off-season.

However, after departing Castleford Tigers most recently, Matagi has been quickly snapped up by Doncaster, who got promoted to the Betfred Championship last season.

Discussing whether the move will block his chance to play for Salem again, Robinson said: “It’s something that we are not exactly sure about at the minute. Me and Bob will have to discuss that with the correct people.

“What I can say is that Suaia has brought a great deal of enthusiasm and professionalism to the team in the past few weeks, and all the boys have followed suit. We’ll have to speak to Suaia about whether he continues playing with us, but hopefully we see him tonight (Thursday evening) at training.”

Salem take on Leodiensian on today  with the latter currently occupying 5th place, while Hood’s side find themselves in 6th with only one point separating the two sides.

A chance to leapfrog this weekend’s opposition is an opportunity Bradford can’t pass up on according to Robinson, who said: “It’s something that we’ve been guilty of in recent years; we’ve not been able to beat those sides near us in the league table. Last week, we achieved that by beating Keighley but it’s important that we take the momentum and confidence from that game into this weekend’s match.

“Leodiensian are a different beast this year and we know it’s going to be a very tough fixture, but we must capitalise on our recent run by beating sides around us. Winning buoys anybody involved.”

At this point last season, when eight fixtures had been played, Salem had picked up two less victories than this time around (five), but despite their fast start to life Counties One Yorkshire, Robinson admitted that the team must not get carried away.

He said: “It’s a marathon and not a sprint, and you’ve got to make sure you turn up every week in this division to collect points. The side at the bottom of the league can beat the side at the top and although I’m not sure it will happen this season, I know it can and has happened in the past. So, we’ve got to make sure we’re on top form every week, or else we will get found out as a team.

“I think Bob (Hood) has brought a great deal of experience and calmness to the club – not only in relation to the playing squad – but to the club in general. And although I’m not getting carried away with the start we’ve made just yet, you can see that everyone is buying into his ideas and philosophies so far.”