KEIGHLEY Albion have announced that Hunslet RLFC’s Jy-Mel Coleman will be joining their senior coaching team in 2021.

Coleman, who lives in East Morton, brings lots of experience to Albion, having played in the professional game for over ten years.

As well as his current side Hunslet, he has turned out in the Championship and League One for Keighley Cougars, London Skolars, Newcastle Thunder, York City Knights, Dewsbury Rams and Hemel Stags

Cougars fans among Albion’s members will remember Coleman playing a crucial role in the 2011 Championship One Grand Final winning side.

They were coached by Jason Demetriou, who is now assistant head coach at NRL side South Sydney Rabbitohs.

Coleman is also an established international rugby league player, and has the honour of being Jamaica’s all-time highest points scorer.

His conversions proved decisive in the Reggae Warriors’ historic 16-10 World Cup qualifying victory against the USA in November 2018, ensuring they became the inaugural Caribbean nation to qualify for a Rugby League World Cup.

It is highly likely that Coleman will be named in Jamaica’s 2021 World Cup squad, and he will be looking to secure his spot by playing a key role for Gary Thornton’s Hunslet side in 2021.

A ball-playing half back with a phenomenal kicking game, Coleman has a reputation for dictating the play and tempo as an on-field general.

His fantastic knowledge and awareness of the game is sure to be of great value to the promising Albion first team squad.

During his time at London Skolars, Coleman played, but was also in an assistant coaching role.

He is passionate about progressing his coaching while continuing his playing career at Hunslet.

He has also stressed that he is keen to develop alongside Albion’s experienced head coach Dean Buckler - who has coached at high levels in Australia and the UK, including with Northern Bulldogs, Newtown Jets and Sheffield Eagles’ reserves.

Ironically, Coleman also forms a common link between all of Albion’s existing open age coaches, having been a school and junior teammate of Rob Spencer (first team coach), while Buckler played with Coleman’s father at Queens Amateur.

On the appointment, club chairman Richard Dibbin said: “I’m delighted to welcome Jy-Mel to Keighley Albion, and look forward to meeting him as we launch our pre-season.

“His playing record speaks for itself and he is undoubtedly a fantastic acquisition for our coaching team.

“It is a huge signal of intent, as we look forward to a highly competitive return.

“We will shortly be announcing more of our 2021 plans for the first team at the club, for what is set to be a highly competitive and exciting season.”