Whiting pens new Hull FC deal
Hull FC's popular forward Richard Whiting looks set to enjoy a testimonial year with the club after agreeing a new two-year contract at the Black and Whites.by NRL
Hull FC's popular forward Richard Whiting looks set to enjoy a testimonial year with the club after agreeing a new two-year contract at the Black and Whites.
The 27-year-old, who joined the club from Featherstone back in 2004, has been a mainstay of the Hull side in recent seasons, missing his first game in over a year and half when suspended against Hull KR last Saturday.
Having been with the club since a young age, including playing in the famous 2005 Challenge Cup win over Leeds, Whiting admits there isn't anywhere else he would rather be.
"I've thought long and hard about the contract offer, especially now I have a young family and things, but in reality it was a very simple decision for me to make," he said.
"I love the club, we have a great group of players and the staff and supporters have been great with me ever since I joined all those years ago.
"They've supported me through some difficult years with injuries and now I finally feel like I am really playing at the top of my game, I'm really enjoying my rugby and I want to continue that for Hull FC."
The former England international added, "There is a real belief around the club that we are now going places and we all believe in what we can achieve here so I definitely want to be a part of that."
The long serving player, known as Mr Versatile for his ability to play everywhere in the team, has once again proved invaluable this term with a number of committed displays in various positions.
However, it has been his performances at loose forward, a position he has moved to under new coach Peter Gentle, that have really caught the eye and the Hull boss admits Whiting is vital to the team.
"I think you only had to look at last weekend's match against Hull KR to see what Richard brings to the table as his absence was obvious in that game, " said Gentle.
"He does a lot of the unnoticed things very well, he has a level head and is a very good natural footballer.
"He understands the game and his role, he gives 110% every week and that is probably why he is so adaptable and can cover many roles for us.
"We've utilised him more in the back row this year and he has grasped his opportunity with both hands and there is no-one more deserving of a new deal with the club."
A former Young Super League Player of the Year, Whiting has impressed at the Black and Whites having made 185 appearances, scoring 58 tries and 19 goals during that time.
However, it's also been his work off the field that has been the highlight of a stellar career so far, working very hard in the local community and with the club's junior teams, which has seen him win the club and Super League Community Player of the Year awards.
Hull FC's Director of Rugby, Shaun McRae, believes that is why Whiting has proven so popular at the club and why a new deal was always in the offing.
"We have been talking a lot of late regarding a culture at this club and a change to the environment here and I guess Richard really epitomises that for us.
"He is a hard working, honest professional who will go the extra mile for the club, not only on the field playing various positions when called upon but also off the field in the community.
"More recently, he has also stepped up to a role within our junior grades supporting the likes of Lee Radford and Andy Last and for our younger players to be able to learn from a player of his stature and experience is brilliant.
"If ever we had the perfect role model for those younger guys to follow, then Richard is the man and we're delighted he has committed his future to the club."
He also added, "He has been in excellent form for us this season but I am in no doubt some of Richard's best years are still ahead of him.
"He has matured into a fine rugby league player with a good knowledge of the game and he can play a big part in what we want to build here."
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