Featherstone sign Wakefield prop James on two-year deal

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FEATHERSTONE Rovers today confirmed they have signed prop Matt James from Wakefield Wildcats.

The 25-year-old Welsh international (pictured) has been recruited on a two-year contract as a replacement for former club captain Stuart Dickens who has joined Wakefield’s coaching staff.

Featherstone coach Daryl Powell said: “Having lost Stuart Dickens to retirement, our priority signing was a prop forward to replace him. We have managed to sign a player of undoubted quality who I am positive will become a fans favourite with his all action style of play.

“He is a tough, uncompromising player who carries the ball exceptionally well and defends in an aggressive way. Matt will be with us for the next two years which gives him and the team excellent continuity.”

Former Eastmoor Dragons ARLFC player James started his professional career at Bradford Bulls, for whom he made 27 appearances.

In 2010, James signed for Harlequins and then joined Championship club Barrow on loan in 2011.

He signed for his home town club Wakefield at the beginning of the 2012 season and had a second brief loan spell at Halifax before being recalled to the Wildcats.

James said “I am really looking forward to joining Featherstone Rovers and working under the expert coaching skills of Daryl Powell. Although I had one year still to run on my Wakefield Wildcats contract, the opportunity to play on a more regular basis with Featherstone Rovers will enable me to improve and develop as a player and hopefully I can help the club achieve their ambition of reaching Super League.”

Rovers chief executive Craig Poskitt said: “Matt is exactly the type of player Daryl was looking for.

“We fought off competition from Super League clubs for his signature so the transfer has taken a while to secure his services.

“Matt’s signing is yet another statement that we are strengthening the squad as we approach probably the most important time in the club’s recent history.

“We are hoping that further to the Watkins Review, that promotion and relegation is introduced back to the sport enabling the top team to be promoted to Super League. We cannot sit back and admire the last three years, the future is now firmly on our agenda to continue our success.”