Parr to oversee NRL's Knights in new role

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Long-serving rugby league administrator Peter Parr has been appointed to a high-powered role with Newcastle as the NRL club's director of football.

Parr, who has held several off-field roles at North Queensland over the past two decades, will essentially take control of the club's entire football department in the newly-created position.

Current general manager of football Danny Buderus will remain in his role and work under Parr, as well head coach Adam O'Brien.

A former Souths Newcastle player who was born in the NSW city, Parr will oversee the club's men's and women's programs and report directly to Knights chief executive Philip Gardner.

Parr will start the role next week, ending his long-running association with the Cowboys.

"This is a great opportunity for me to continue my career at a club I have always respected, with the added bonus of returning to the town where I grew up," Parr said.

"The Knights have all the ingredients to be successful.

"They are a one-team town with extraordinary community support, have a big catchment area of juniors, passionate supporters, and a strong membership and corporate base, and a team that played finals football less than 12 months ago."

Parr's appointment comes with O'Brien under pressure to hold onto his position after an underwhelming 2022 campaign.

The Knights sit 14th on the ladder with just five wins from 18 games and a cloud over the immediate future of star fullback Kalyn Ponga after a series of concussions in the past six weeks.

Knights legend Andrew Johns slammed his former team as "hopeless" on the Nine Network after last weekend's humiliating 42-12 thumping by the Sydney Roosters.

Gardner said Parr's role in transforming the Cowboys into a premiership-winning force had him hoping for a similar reversal of fortune under his direction.

"He's seen everything rugby league throws at you in his time in the game, we know his experience and nous will be invaluable in providing our team, and the team behind the team, with the support it needs to get better and grow into the future," Gardner said.

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