LEIGH Centurions have welcomed back an old face to the fold.

Simon Knox, who worked as assistant to head coach Paul Rowley when he was thrust into the top job back in 2009, is back at the club to assist Martin Ellis and Tim Hartley with the club’s scholarship squads.

Rowley is pleased to have Knox, pictured right, on board.

“It’s a strong coaching unit and a tight one too,” he said.

“If you look at our coaching list: myself, Neil Jukes, Paul Anderson, John Duffy, Tim Hartley, Martin Ellis, Bob Beswick, Stuart Littler and now Simon, it is very much young, ambitious, professional at all levels with international experience.”

Knox has been away from the professional game for a couple of years.

But Rowley explained: “Simon has a good job – he’s got a very good business head. His sons are very sporty and that has all taken up a lot of his time.

“He has had some involvement at Leigh Miners Rangers Academy and has done well for them.

“As a player he was a Scottish international who played in a couple of Challenge Cup Finals and worked under some of the world’s best coaches.

“He is a good friend of mine and I have a lot of trust in him.

“I’d be foolish not to get him involved at grassroots level where it's vitally important that not only are they getting the right coaching, but the right role model and he fits that bill.”

With the first week of pre-season completed by his players, Rowley reflected on a solid start in the weights room from his squad.

“We are breaking them in nice and steady,” he said.

“There is a very long season ahead.

“I think everyone has enjoyed getting back into routine and everyone is now overcoming that initial soreness.

“The difference between now and last year is that we’ve probably got a little bit more time to prepare. We are clearer in how we are going by way of venues. We are organised, certainly up until Christmas and numbers are a little bit better as well.”

More positive news concerns Martin Aspinwall. The former Hull man linked with his new teammates last week and penned an extended three-year contract which takes him to 2015.