HOMETOWN hero Danny Orr (pictured) is to continue for another year as Castleford Tigers captain.
The vastly experienced scrum-half enjoyed a successful return last season to the club he started with and signed a one-year deal to play on in 2012.
Now he has impressed new head coach Ian Millward in pre-season training and will once again be given the skipper’s armband in the campaign ahead.
Millward explained: “Danny Orr is a leader and typifies Castleford, being a local boy.
“He’s done very well in pre-season and I’m happy for him to continue as captain.
“He’s shown really good leadership qualities both on the field last season and in our pre-season. His experience will be a big help. Out of the seven players that have left since last season five of them were 30 years of age or approaching 30 so we’ve lost a lot there.”
The Express can reveal that Orr will once again wear the number seven shirt with the squad numbers for 2012 also set to be announced today.
There are few surprises, but teenage star Daryl Clark has been given his first squad shirt and will wear the number nine ahead of fellow hookers Ryan Hudson and Adam Milner while promising young back James Clare, who recently signed his first full-time deal, receives his first number and will be wear the 26 shirt.
Millward said: “I’m not a big believer of squad numbers, I think it should be the conventional one to 17. Players should earn the right to a starting position, not be given it in pre-season, but so be it and obviously we’ve got some players I’ve put down there. But it is only early days.
“Daryl Clark has been given the number nine shirt, but I’ve been impressed with all three hookers we have in the squad. One of them has to get the nine shirt and Daryl’s been given it, he’s signe d a four-year contract and he’s part of that spine of the team that I’m trying to promote. But Adam Milner and Ryan Hudson are also doing well.
“James Clare being given the number 26 is a little bit of a reflection that we’re short on outside backs, but it’s also a reflection that he does have speed and is athletic.
“We believe we have a duty to nurture him and advance him into our first grade team. It will give him a boost as well to be given a squad number for the first time.”
Millward has also brought in a new idea of establishing a leadership group of five senior players, initially selecting Danny Orr, Kirk Dixon, Brett Ferres, Stuart Jones and Ryan McGoldrick.
He explained: “The leadership group is about people who help with players and upholding the tradition we’re trying to promote. They’ll help with discipline and will be a good springboard for me to sound things off.
“In choosing the five we spoke to the players and looked for the qualities in them and believed they gave us a good cross section.
“They’re all players who are doing well in pre-season and we just feel they can give a different and intelligent view on things.”
Castleford’s 2012 squad is:
1 Richard Owen, 2 Nick Youngquest, 3 Joe Arundel, 4 Kirk Dixon, 5 Josh Griffin, 6 Rangi Chase, 7 Danny Orr, 8 Jake Emmitt, 9 Daryl Clark, 10 Craig Huby, 11 Brett Ferres, 12 Jonathan Walker, 13 Steve Snitch, 14 Stuart Jones, 15 Adam Milner, 16 Ryan Hudson, 17 Lee Mitchell, 18 Cas Fans 19 Paul Jackson, 20 Grant Millington, 21 Oliver Holmes, 22 Nathan Massey, 23 Ryan McGoldrick, 24 Steve Nash, 25 Jordan Thompson, 26 James Clare, 27 John Davies.