CASTLEFORD Tigers stalwart Stuart Jones is leaving the club at the end of the season.
The 30-year-old second row forward, who has decided to retire from full time professional RL to take up a role away from the game, joined Cas ahead of the 2009 season on a one-year-deal from Huddersfield. His contract was then upgraded to a further three-year deal.
Former Wigan and St Helens player Jones said: “I’ve enjoyed my time here. There have been some ups and downs along the way but I will be able to look back and say that I’ve had four good years at Cas.
“I’ve had a good job opportunity come up and it is time I started looking towards my future career and this means stepping down from full time rugby league.
“It has been a good experience at Cas. There’s been a great bunch of lads over the years and the fans are second to none. The club is in a bit of a transition. The stadium saga has maybe held the club back. Hopefully that will get sorted soon and the club will be providing results that the fans deserve.”
Jones added that the ‘transition’ of players that will occur at Castleford for the 2013 season is not something for the fans to be ’too worried’ about.
“There’s going to be a big change in personnel. Basil (Tigers coach Ian Millward) will want to build his own team and I completely understand that. When I came in there were 10 changes and all club’s experience change. It’s very much cyclical especially when a club is doing it tough as we are at the moment.”
Jones, who lives in Wigan and makes a 120-mile round trip every day for training, added: “I’ve been lucky to not have had many bad injuries. I’m proud to have played over 250 games, with over 100 for Huddersfield. Fingers crossed next week’s game against London will be my 100th for Cas. That would give me great pride.”