Ground: Cougar Park (7,800)
Coach: Rhys Lovegrove
Captain: Jack Miller
Last season: 4th League 1 (preliminary final)
The hangover from a disappointing end to 2021 will need to clear quickly at Cougar Park if Rhys Lovegrove’s men are to once again challenge for promotion to the Championship.
It all looked like being so different last year for the Cougars when they were leading Doncaster in the preliminary final before Luke Johnson’s try, converted by Jake Sweeting, ended Keighley’s season.
Surprisingly knocked out of the Challenge Cup this year by Hunslet, Lovegrove will also have to do without the services of Phoenix Laulu-Togaga’e after he returned to parent club Hull Kingston Rovers.
A prudent 2021 for the Australian born Samoan saw him claim League 1’s Young Player of the Year and it comes of little surprise that Super League appearances are under the 18-year-olds belt. But his father Quentin still remains at Cougar Park after a short loan spell at Sheffield Eagles and along with experienced duo Jake Webster and Scott Murrell as Keighley’s rebuilding continues under the stewardship of returning chairman Mick O’Neil.
Quick Keighley facts:
- Much of the modern-day glitz and glam associated with rugby league on these shores is credited to Keighley who started this trend – nicknamed Cougarmania – in the mid 1990s.
- Prolific Keighley winger Nick Pinkney was part of the England squad at the 1995 Rugby League World Cup.