Widnes Vikings have signed powerhouse Papua New Guinea prop, Stanton Albert.
The highly-rated ONG international joins the Vikings from PNG Hunters – where he will link up with brother Wellington, who has also signed for Widnes this year. Stanton joins the club on a two-year deal, pending visa approval.
The prop made three appearances at the recent Rugby League World Cup, including featuring in the defeats of Wales and Ireland. He has represented Penrith Panthers in the Queensland Cup, joining the club in 2015, and was a pivotal member of the PNG Hunters team that won the 2017 Intrust Super Cup Premiership.
Widnes coach Denis Betts said: “Stanton is a player that we have had real interest in, even before my time at the World Cup. He came highly recommended to us by some of our key contacts in Australia, and I was very impressed in what I saw in his international appearances for PNG at the tournament.
“Stanton joins the Vikings with a great pedigree and a desire to build his career. He will create real competition for places, because he is desperate to play and wants to make the most out of this opportunity.
“His move also makes a lot of sense, given the tragic news of Kato’s passing. We believe that Wellington and Stanton will get the best out of each other, and settle well in the local community together. Of course, Widnes Vikings have a famous heritage of brothers and relatives representing the Club, and we are excited that the pair have the opportunity to forge their own chapter in that history.
“I am sure that Stronghold Members and supporters will relish seeing him in action this season.”