WAKEFIELD Trinity Wildcats have signed utility back Lee Smith on a one-month loan from Leeds Rhinos.
The 25-year-old will provide cover for Wakefield’s injured centres Dean Collis and Vince Mellars and will go straight into the 19-man squad to face Wigan Warriors on Sunday.
Wildcats head coach Richard Agar said: “Lee is certainly a good addition, he is a quality player and we were alerted to the situation by the fact he was a regular in the Nines.
“When we knew he wasn’t going to feature this weekend it coincided with Dean Collis being out with a fracture in his shoulder and Vince Mellars has been diagnosed with a detached retina which needs surgery.
“To lose both our centres is a fair chunk out of our team and Lee has not being getting the amount of football that he wants and a player of his calibre is too good not to be playing week-in, week-out in Super League. If it’s not with Leeds then we are in a position to offer him a crack with us.”
Smith, who featured against Wakefield in the Challenge Cup earlier this year, said: “I have come here to get some game time, I had a word with Brian McDermott [Leeds head coach] and he said I wouldn’t be involved this week and maybe not in the semi-final next week either so I thought it was a good opportunity to get back playing out on the field.”
The 25-year-old also hinted at earning a full-time deal at Wakefield, or elsewhere, saying: “My contract is up this year and this obviously gives me a chance to get out and play and put me in the shop window.
“I can see what’s out there, the season is coming to an end soon and I will be looking to either stay at Leeds or look elsewhere.”
See this week’s Wakefield Express for all the latest sports news from around the district.