Challenge Cup: Hunslet Club Parkside a family affair for the McShanes

Paul McShane
Paul McShane coaches his brothers Craig and Jack at Hunslet Club Parkside
Coral Challenge Cup: Skirlaugh v Hunslet CP
Venue: Eastside Community Sports Trust, Hull Date: Saturday, 11 January Kick-off: 12:30 BST
Coverage: Live stream on BBC Red Button, Connected TVs, iPlayer and the BBC Sport website.

The last thing any younger sibling wants is to be bossed about by their elders.

Spare a thought then for Hunslet Club Parkside players Craig and Jack McShane, whose older brother - Castleford Tigers hooker Paul McShane - just happens to be head coach.

What is even worse for youngest sibling Jack is that he also plays as a hooker for the National Conference League side.

"I must just do their head in, telling them what to do," McShane told BBC Sport. "I'm nine years older than Craig and 11 years older than Jack, so it can't be good for them."

It says much for Paul's love of the game that as well as spending all day immersed in rugby league, he gives up evenings and weekends to coach the 'Old Boys' first team.

A self-described rugby nerd, the 30-year-old has been juggling his own pre-season preparations at Castleford with Saturday's Challenge Cup first-round tie at East Yorkshire side Skirlaugh.

"It gives me a different view of it," he added. "It's still stressful sometimes, especially when it comes to a game and you've got to fit 23 lads - who just come and play for the love of it - into a 17-man squad.

"But the enjoyment of seeing them having a laugh in training - that gives you a buzz."

England and Hull prop Scott Taylor
England and Hull FC prop Scott Taylor used to play for Skirlaugh, and also coaches at Beverley ARLFC

McShane laughs at the idea the players are impressed by his professional credentials, adding they see him more as a friend than a mentor.

Playing at community game level is tough, as training twice a week and committing to games can be a big pull on time for the players.

"They play rugby because they still love the game," McShane said. "They're pretty determined, they want to be the best and are pretty driven as a group.

"As a coach you don't need to push it, you just have to guide them really."

Saturday's opponents Skirlaugh have been a breeding ground for top-level rugby league players, with former England coach Steve McNamara, England prop Scott Taylor and Taylor's Hull FC team-mate Jamie Shaul all coming through to the professional ranks.

While the Black, Gold and Whites are yet to beat professional opposition in the competition, they have enjoyed ties against league clubs, taking Swinton Lions to extra-time and losing narrowly to Whitehaven.

Chairman Steve Kennedy says the club have opted to offer free entry to supporters for Saturday's game, and all age-group sides will be attending.

"It's a competition the players want to be part of, there's still a prestige there," he said.

"It's the first time we've been on television, the Challenge Cup will be down and we're looking at it as publicity. We are looking at the bigger picture."

Top Stories