MX23RW : Tuesday, December 11 19:25:02

Leeds bring in Australian Test forward Trent Merrin on four-year deal

Leeds bring in Australian Test forward Trent Merrin on four-year deal
© Reuters
The 29-year-old prop has secured a release from the last two years of his contract with Penrith Panthers.

Leeds believe their capture of Australian Test forward Trent Merrin is further  proof of their determination to return to their glory days.

The 29-year-old prop secured a release from the last two years of his contract with Penrith Panthers to sign a four-year deal with the Rhinos as their second marquee recruit for 2019.

Leeds, who had to fight for their Super League lives after finishing in the bottom four in 2018, say they fended off competition from a number of NRL clubs for the signature of Merrin.

Australia v Scotland – Ladbrokes Four Nations – KC Lightstream Stadium
Trent Merrin in action for Australia in the Four Nations at the KCOM Stadium in Hull (Dave Howarth/PA)

Director of rugby Kevin Sinfield said: "We are delighted to have signed Trent. He has an outstanding reputation in Australia for his leadership within a group and is someone who has played for a decade at the highest level of the game.

"He will complement our current group of forwards and is another indication of the ambition of the club to move forward into a new exciting era."

New Leeds coach David Furner spoke of his desire to add Merrin to his roster on his arrival in the country a week ago.

The New South Wales forward has played over 200 games in the NRL for the Panthers and St George Illawarra and won the last of his seven caps against New Zealand in 2017.

Merrin said: "I have done everything I possibly could in the NRL and this is a great opportunity for me to come to a great club with a fantastic culture and hopefully achieve some goals together.

"It is good to have clarity about my future, I am looking forward to coming to a new country, stepping outside of my comfort zone and being part of something special with Leeds.

Castleford Tigers v Leeds Rhinos – Betfred Super League – Mend-A-Hose-Jungle
Leeds Rhinos' director of rugby Kevin Sinfield says the signing of Trent Merrin is a statement of intent (Mike Egerton/PA)

"There is a lot I still want to achieve. I want to put my best foot forward and, when I eventually come back home, I want to be able to look back on a special period in my life.

"I have spent time with Dave Furner in camp before and enjoyed the experience. He is obviously well respected at Leeds from his time there as a player and has built an impressive coaching career in the NRL since then."

Merrin becomes the Rhinos' fifth new face for 2019, following the addition of centre Konrad Hurrell, their first marquee signing, half-backs Tui Lolohea and Callum McLelland and prop Dom Crosby.

Leeds chief executive Gary Hetherington commented: "This is hugely significant for not just Leeds Rhinos but the Super League competition and shows the ambition of our club to compete at the very top of the game.

"Trent was Dave Furner's number one target and it has come as a major boost to have secured a player of his quality on a long-term contract."


Click here for more stories about Trent Merrin

Click here for more stories about Leeds Rhinos

Share this article now:
New Rugby League generic
Read Next:
Tom Makinson lauds Wayne Bennett after England see off New Zealand
>

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel

Subscribe to our Newsletter


Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Login, I already have my ad-free pass
Log in to customise Sports Mole
Buy ad-free access (show me the options)
Buy monthly ad-free access for £1.20/month
Buy yearly ad-free access for £12 (2 months free)
Settings - Logout - Manage your account
Settings - Logout - Manage your account