Jack Owens has targeted a Super League return after confirming he will not be at St Helens next season.
The former Widnes starlet will spend the rest of the season on loan at Championship side Sheffield Eagles, after which time his contract will have expired with Saints.
Owens, who turned 23 last week, said he is now hoping his performances at the Eagles will help him earn another Super League contract next year.
“I won’t be going back to Saints,” he said.
“I’m up at the end of the year and I’m here for the rest of the season. All I can do now is focus on playing rugby and keep trying my best. Hopefully, I’ll get a Super League club and if that doesn’t happen I’ll hopefully get a Championship club, or maybe I’ll stay at Sheffield.
“Ideally, I’d like to be in Super League but I’m not going to think about the future, I’m going to focus on myself and start to enjoy it again.
“I can’t take this move lightly and just think I can put my boots on and turn up. I’ve got to perform and stand out to get back where I want to.”
Owens moved to St Helens ahead of the 2016 season, which prompted then Saints chief Keiron Cunningham to express his shock following his release from Widnes.
But he failed to establish himself there, much to the disappointment of Owens himself.
“I’d have liked to play a few more games but that’s Rugby League for you,” he said.
“Sometimes it works out and sometimes it doesn’t. At the end of last year I was hitting some form, but the club was in a tricky situation with Keiron leaving and Justin coming in.
“I wish them all the best and hope they can get back into the top four. I’m going to start focusing on myself and playing for the Eagles.”