Leigh Centurions coach Paul Rowley admits he wasn’t looking for another forward, but he could not turn down the chance to sign Salford’s Jake Emmitt last week.
Emmitt became the fifth Super League player to join the Centurions for 2014, following the captures of Oliver Wilkes, Tom Spencer, Alex Brown and Liam Kay.
Wilkes and Spencer had already been joined by new prop signings Sam Barlow and Jamie Acton, while Michael Ostick, Ryan Duffy and Anthony Bate remain at the club.
But Rowley was keen to add Welsh international Emmitt to his ranks, and he starts a second spell with the Centurions, after playing with them on dual-registration four years ago.
The 25-year-old has extensive top-flight experience, having made 81 appearances during his time with Saints, the Tigers and the Salford.
He was contacted to Salford for the 2014 season, but agreed a release package with the Red Devils and was quickly snapped up by Leigh.
Rowley said: “We probably weren’t actively looking for another forward, and we’re well blessed and somewhat over-populated now in the middle unit
“But I knew all about Jake from his previous spell at the club, and have a lot of respect for him.
“I know how much he likes the club, because he’s kept in touch, and we couldn’t turn down a talent like that. We’re delighted he’s here.”
Rowley admitted that the signing could lead to a few selection headaches, but says all of his props will get game time.
“It’s too early to say we’ve identified anybody, because everyone has been equally impressive so far,” Rowley added.
“Everyone will get an opportunity and we’ll make sure that everybody plays, whether it be first team, 20s or out on loan.”
Centurions’ football director Derek Beaumont is also confident that Emmitt will prove a quality addition to Rowley’s squad.
Beaumont said: “Jake is a good young prop with bags of Super League experience who was available.
“I spoke with Paul (Rowley) and although this perhaps is not a position in which we may feel we are struggling, we must sign quality when it is available, and if we do that everything else will look after itself.
“Jake is a quality player and with the whole issue of what happens in Super League in 2015, and how clubs may or may not qualify, up in the air, we are determined to have the squad that will get us through.”