Huddersfield Giants have signed Bradford Bulls’ England Academy backrow forward Oliver Roberts on a two-year contract.
Roberts, 19, has made six Super League appearances for the Bulls but missed most of last season after suffering a broken leg against Wigan. The Giants have agreed to pay the Bulls an undisclosed fee for the 6’1” forward in accordance with RFL regulations.
And the move means that Roberts has achieved his ambition to stay in Super League, despite the Bulls’ relegation to the Championship.
“I wanted to stay in the Super League competition of at all possible after our relegation,” said Roberts.
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“Sometimes opportunities arise and you have to take them when you have the chance, and this is a good move for me.
“I’ll be joining that great squad they’ve got, and I would now like to force my way into the team to become one of their starting players.”
And Roberts has a particular role in mind.
“I can’t wait to learn from Brett Ferres, who is one of the best backrowers in the competition,” he added.
“I play on the right side, and he plays on the left, so I would love to partner Brett in the Huddersfield team. I would love to be as good as him, and the same goes for the other players there.
“The club is bringing in a new, younger generation of players, such as Jake Connor and Kruise Leeming, and I see myself as part of that development.
“I know the path into the team is a tough one, but I’m confident enough to back myself. I need a good pre-season campaign and I’ll be ready to go come the trials in January after a couple of months with the group.”
And Roberts has paid a departing compliment to his old club.
“I have absolutely loved being at Bradford. It was a great decision to sign for them when I joined their Academy. I’ve spent three years there and I’ve loved every minute of it,” he told League Express.
“I only had a short time with Jimmy Lowes there, but he was awesome. With him in charge I’m sure the Bulls will only go one way now. He is an outstanding coach.
“But then again, Franny Cummins was outstanding for me, as was Lee St Hilaire, who was there when I needed him.
“But now I just want to push on and try my best.”