New Ellis role very important - Radford
Hull FC head coach Lee Radford is confident Gareth Ellis' new position at the club will have a positive impact ahead of the new season.
After retiring from playing at the end of the 2017 campaign, Ellis moved upstairs into a football manager position at the KCOM Stadium vacated by New Zealander Motu Tony.
With the job role being assessed towards the conclusion of the 2018 season, the former England international has now been installed as the Emerging Talent Coach and will also oversee the reserves.
However, 37-year-old Ellis will also act as the contact coach and Radford, who has been in charge since 2014, believes that aspect of his job will be of particular benefit to the players.
"It's been really good with Gaz. I have been impressed with his first few weeks," he told Hull Live. "He has been influential, which is good. The specific role he has with the first-team squad with regards to the youngsters is good, but also the contact side of things is great.
"He is our contact coach as well, essentially ,and I think he'll thrive in that. There weren't too many players in the Super League who had better contact into the collision than Gareth Ellis so him preaching that and taking ownership of it will obviously help me.
"It will lessen my focus in that area because I know he can cover it."
James Mason grew up in Northumberland so is entrenched in both the football and golf scenes. A low handicap golfer, he also follows Newcastle United and predicts big things under Rafa Benitez.