Keighley Cougars sign PNG prop

Keighley Cougars have completed the signing of Leeds Rhinos forward Wellington Albert.

The PNG international joins the club on a one-year deal and will link up with the likes of Scott Murrell at Cougar Park next season.

The prop had previously played for Widnes and he said: “I’m really looking forward to a new opportunity with Keighley.

“I can’t wait to meet up with the boys now, it has been 7 or 8 months since I last got to meet up with teammates and train, and it is really exciting for me.

“There are some really good players at the club already, so I’m looking forward to getting into training and help build some confidence and then win some games once we get into the new season.

“I didn’t really know much about Keighley, but last year before lockdown I met a few of the boys when I played against them in a couple of training matches with Featherstone.

“But my agent called me around a month ago to inform me of Keighley’s interest and ask me what I thought about joining the club.

“I am just looking forward now to getting back out and playing some footy, and I’m really looking forward to doing that with Keighley and helping the club move up the divisions into the Championship.”

Head coach Rhys Lovegrove added: “I’m really excited about having a player such as Wellington at the club.

“His athleticism is going to really add something unique to not just the forward pack, but the squad as a whole.

“With the team we have and the systems that I want to play moving forward, Wellington will definitely add something different.

“I’m just really excited now to see him in Cougar colours in 2021.”

Chairman Mick O’Neill added: “It is a great coup for the club that a player of the calibre of Wellington has signed with us.

“I was very pleased to be involved in the negotiations to sign Wellington and am absolutely delighted to be able to welcome him to Keighley.

“He is a giant that will add something new and different to our forwards next season, and I just can’t wait to see Wellington now both in training and playing once the season begins.

“The reputation that Wellington has back home in Papua New Guinea will put is in good stead for the future when it comes to signing targets amongst his fellow countrymen, who we hope will look to come once we’re in the Championship.”