The new Super League season is just five weeks away, and there are still players and clubs on the look out for each other. We take a look at some of the players still up for grabs ahead of the new campaign.
Probably the most high profile player still without the club, Senior was a victim of the sensational exit from Super League of Crusaders. Senior, 35, had opted to sign for the Welsh club, turning down offers from several other clubs, only to see his contract ripped up as they withdrew from Super League, much to the annoyance of the former Great Britain international. He has featured in every Super League season to date, with Sheffield and Leeds, and will be looking to continue that run in 2012. Recently, Senior revealed he had offers from three clubs, which could include a return to Leeds on a pay-as-you-play contract, but Hull KR are now leading the chase for his signature.
The prop has spent the past nine years at Hull, proving a solid servant in Super League, and picking up a Challenge Cup winners medal. Talks broke down with the club towards the end of last season, and Dowes played in his final match against Leeds in the play-offs in September. The Cumbrian had been linked with a move to Wakefield, to team up with former Hull coach Richard Agar, but that move doesn’t seem to have materialised. The Wildcats do, however, have a couple of vacant squad numbers in their 25-man squad, but moving down to the Championship may also be another option for the forward.
Super League’s forgotten man, Cooke took a year off in 2011 having last appeared for Wakefield. He helped Hull to their 2005 Challenge Cup triumph before that controversial cross city switch to Hull KR. He hasn’t been able to recapture his prime form, and is now likely to step down to the Championship. Third tier side Doncaster have recently revealed they are trying to get funds together to make his signing, but that will have alerted a few rival clubs in the Championship still looking to fill key positions in their team.
Released by Wigan having spent a long spell on loan at Harlequins, Pryce hasn’t quite lived up to his early promise, but an outside back of his size could be a good addition to any bottom half Super League squad. Heavily linked with Castleford, Pryce’s future is still up in the air, with Wakefield also believed to be interested. The 25-year-old has 79 Super League appearances under his belt having started his career at Bradford.
Another player left in limbo by the demise of Crusaders, Tansey once again finds himself on the look out for a new club. The former Leeds academy graduate was sacked on the eve of last season by Hull FC, and spent time in the Championship with Dewsbury, before being given another chance in the top flight. He could be reunited with former Hull coach Richard Agar at Wakefield, but may end up having to drop down a division to find his next club.
The 33-year-old winger is on the lookout for a new club having been sacked by Bradford at the end of the season for disciplinary reasons. He was jailed for 15 months back in May 2010, and could be forced to return if he is unable to raise £120,000 to pay for a counterfeit scam. The former Leeds, Hull and Crusaders admitted personal problems in a candid story in the Daily Star earlier this month, and also said he doesn’t expect to earn a Super League deal for 2012. He expressed a desire to play for boyhood club Featherstone, but that seems very unlikely.
Any hopes that Gleeson could rescue his career appear to have been quashed by a local newspaper report, that alleges the former St Helens, Warrington and Wigan centre failed a drugs test shortly after joining Hull last season. Once dubbed one of the best centres in the world, Gleeson has been plagued with problems in recent seasons, and after being handed a chance by the Airlie Birds, appears to have wasted it.
Widnes have two signings lined up to fill numbers 18 and 19 currently vacant in their squad list, while Wakefield also have a couple of spare numbers in their initial squad list. Castleford, Salford and London are yet to reveal details of their 25-man line-ups, so there may be some last minute business as the new season approaches.
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