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"From the first time I saw them, I was a Rovers fan - for better or worse - and always will be," says official club historian Roger Pugh of his life-long passion, which began in 1968.In, 'The Robins - An Official History of Hull Kingston Rovers', Roger goes back to the founding fathers of a club that has become a name synonymous with rugby league and traces their story up to the present day; their appearance at Wembley in 2015 and subsequent celebration of ten years in Super League.It is a fascinating odyssey of their initial growth in the late nineteenth century against all the odds; of heady early successes; the long fight against debt and the wider forces of economic depression in the city; of a renaissance and a transition to becoming 'nearly men'; the glorious breakthrough to the very top, followed by a slide into obscurity and administration, and of rescue and return.That Hull Kingston Rovers have survived at all through their dark periods is testament to the determination and dedication of men who simply would not let the club die. This is their story, the players and administrators whose contributions should not be forgotten, their achievements and tribulations properly documented and celebrated. With a foreword by legendary ex-player and current president Colin Hutton and a preface from chairman Neil Hudgell, the book also contains pocket profiles of iconic players through the eras, a focus on the great matches - with a special chapter on the victory at Wembley in the all-Hull Challenge Cup final of 1980 - a list of club honours and records, a players, officials and coaches directory, together with a season-by-season and club-by-club analysis.Putting the Robins in their social context, this meticulously researched volume will appeal not only to fans of the red and whites of east Hull but equally to sporting historians and those who love a tale of defiance and pride.
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Roger Pugh was born in Leeds, West Yorkshire, in 1952. He began following Hull Kingston Rovers in 1968 and moved to the city three years later. He worked for 37 years in the civil service, the last 18 in a communications and public relations, and was awarded the OBE for his work in the New Years' honours list in 2012.Roger is known in East Yorkshire as a league cricket umpire and administrator. He retired from umpiring after 37 years in 2014 but, as a committee member of the Yorkshire County Premier League, is actively involved in the restructuring of Yorkshire cricket.The paucity of literature about the Robins has always disappointed him. When, in 2012, he retired from the civil service, he resolved to address the gap by writing a club history. He is currently a member of the committee of the Hull Kingston Rovers CommunityTrust.Roger is married to Kirsty and has a son Gavin, who is also a Rovers passholder.
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