Castleford Tigers have officially announced the early termination of Callum McLelland’s contract, marking the end of his tenure with the club. McLelland, who began his rugby league journey at the Tigers, has been unable to make a senior appearance for Castleford since his return to the team due to persistent injuries.
The 23-year-old made a name for himself at Castleford, impressing as he progressed through the youth ranks. In 2017, McLelland was part of the Tigers’ Academy squad that reached the Grand Final, showcasing his promising talent. However, before making a senior appearance for Castleford, he temporarily switched to Scotland rugby union. In 2019, McLelland returned to rugby league, joining Leeds Rhinos.
Eager to make an impact back at his hometown club ahead of the 2022 campaign, McLelland’s aspirations were hindered by a patella tendon injury he had sustained during his time at Leeds Rhinos. Despite the efforts of both McLelland and the club’s medical staff to nurse him back to full fitness, he was unable to feature for the Castleford Tigers’ First Team upon his return.
Following a recent setback in his recovery process, McLelland has decided to explore new opportunities outside of the sport for the time being. He expressed his gratitude to everyone associated with the Tigers for their support during this challenging period.
“I’m deeply disappointed that I haven’t been able to play a single game in the two years I’ve been here. I’ve given my all to regain fitness and return to the field, but unfortunately, my injuries have prevented me from doing so. The club has been incredibly supportive since my arrival, and I’m especially grateful to the performance and medical staff, particularly Matty (Crowther). I hope the team finishes the season on a high note, and I wish them all the best,” McLelland stated.
Castleford Head Coach Andy Last has closely witnessed McLelland’s relentless efforts to overcome his injuries and reestablish himself as a player. Last expressed his disappointment at not being able to utilise McLelland’s talents and wished him the best for his future endeavours.
“We are truly disappointed that we couldn’t facilitate Callum’s return to the field for Castleford. Despite the tireless work of our performance and medical teams, along with Callum’s unwavering dedication, we have reached a mutual agreement that it is in the best interests of both parties to part ways. We extend our best wishes to Callum for his future career plans,” said Head Coach Andy Last.
With the departure of Callum McLelland, Castleford Tigers will now focus on finishing the season strongly and aim to achieve success on the field. The club remains committed to nurturing talented players and continuing their pursuit of victory in the rugby league arena.