Saints snap up versatile Leigh player

ST HELENS have signed Leigh’s Kiwi forward James Bell on a two-year contract.

The Auckland-born Scotland international switched to the Centurions from Toulouse ahead of this season, having started out at New Zealand Warriors.

Saints coach Kristian Woolf said: “Whenever we have played Leigh, James has made himself noticed through his physicality.

“I like the way he wants to get up and out of the line and have an impact on the game.

“He is a player with a great work ethic and also has an outstanding skill set that will suit how we want to play.

“We found him difficult to defend against, particularly with his short passing game.

“I also love his versatility. He can play that 13 role, on the edge if needed and he has also jumped in at nine, so he is going to offer us some great depth and competition across a number of starting spots.”

Bell, who has captained the New Zealand Maori side, said: “This has been the opportunity I have been waiting my whole career for.

“Joining the Super League this year, clearly St Helens are the team to beat and I hold them in high regard.

“I can’t wait to rip in, join a winning culture and a great system and I feel it will take my personal game to the next level.”