After signing a new deal to extend his second spell with the Knights into a third year, hooker Kriss Brining admits it was an easy decision to come to and paid tribute to the people at the club.
“I’m very happy to be back at the club for another year,” he said. “It was an easy decision to be honest.
“We have a great group of lads who work hard for each other and want to improve every week,” he added. “Fordy and the coaching staff work hard and put lots of effort into every little detail of training and game day. Everything is methodical and is done for the benefit of the team.”
After coming through the Knights scholarship system, Brining made his club debut in April 2011 at the age of seventeen and, after starring in eighty-six appearances over five years, earned a move to Betfred Super League side Salford Red Devils. After a two year spell with the AJ Bell Stadium club, Scarborough-born Brining returned to the Knights and that long-held association with the club leaves the hooker rather well placed to comment on the growth and change within the club in recent years.
“The first word that comes to mind is probably stability,” he reasoned. “The club seems to be in a very good position, on and off the field, and I think that is shown with the recent signings, retention of players and the number of fans that have been coming every week.”
As attendances have grown off the pitch through the team’s success on it, the feel-good factor surrounding the Knights is set to grow further with our imminent move to the new LNER Community Stadium, a facility Brining joked has been a draw for players for near enough the last decade!
“The new stadium has been a marketing tool for new signings since about 2011/12!,” he noted. “I just can’t believe it’s actually built and that we will get the chance to play in it in the near future. Everything there looks world class.”
On the pitch, Brining is set to continue his hooking partnership with the recently retained Will Jubb and the 26-year-old discussed that pairing. “Jubby is an all-round great lad and a top player,” he explained.
“I think we complement each other well. We are really good mates and always work hard to make each other better. He’s a smart kid on and off the pitch and is as professional as they come.
“I have no doubt he will continue to excel in everything he does and will have a great career,” he added.
“He puts in the hard work and it is appreciated by everyone.”
Through lockdown, society changed and, Brining paid thanks to his employers PenLife for being great to him as he worked from home. The hooker, however, has seen a rather serious occasion delayed. Due to get married to his fiancé earlier this year, that has now been moved to 2021 but the pair have been calm about their delayed nuptials.
“My fiancé and I have been pretty chilled about it all as it was completely out of our hands,” he reasoned. “Luckily everyone involved with our wedding have been really helpful and it was rearranged for the same time next year within a few emails.”
Brining, in more ways than one then, is looking forward to 2021, a year which promises to be a big one for the Knights. That sense of anticipation has only been aided by the recent gesture of support from our members who, in huge numbers, elected to become 2020 Knights Patrons and donate their money back to the club.
“The fans are and have always been class acts,” he said. “They are a noisy bunch when they get going but conduct themselves very well wherever they go, travelling in numbers.
“What they have done with the donation of their membership in such hard times exemplifies that, so a big thank you to everyone for their loyal support.
“It’s been exciting to see the buzz around rugby league in York again.”