Ian Millward to return from compassionate leave

 

Castleford head coach Ian Millward has told the club he will end his compassionate leave this weekend.

The former St Helens boss has been coming to terms with the loss of his 19-year-old son, who died suddenly of a heart attack 18 days ago, leaving his assistant Stuart Donlan in charge of the recent Super League games against Wigan and Leeds.

Donlan will remain in charge for Saturday's trip to London Broncos but Millward has had a big say in team selection this week ahead of his return to work on Monday.

"Ian is going to be back with us on Monday," Donlan said. "We've got a meeting with the players and all the staff at one o'clock. He's got a few things he needs to say to everyone.

"He's in good spirits. He watched the game last Friday on Sky with his family.

"We had a good chat first thing on Monday morning and he rang me again on Monday evening to discuss how training had gone that day.

"We spoke about the squad and selections for this week and who he wants to play in the reserves to get some game time in.

"The unfortunate thing is it would have been Robbie's birthday on Saturday so it's another hurdle he's got to get over."

Castleford will be aiming to end a four-match losing run on Saturday and Donlan says the imminent return of their head coach will provide extra motivation.

"The aim this week is to make his return a lot easier with a victory," he said.

"It would be nice for him to be able to sit down and watch a winning team when he looks at the video on Sunday night.

"The aim is to welcome him back with two more points on the ladder."

PA

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