Castleford Tigers star Isa's set for action

Overseas signing Willie Isa will be fit and ready to go when he arrives at Castleford Tigers later this week.

The 22-year-old Samoan international signed for Tigers on a one-year contract a month ago and has been awaiting visa clearance to fly to the UK.

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That came through earlier this week and Tigers coach Terry Matterson has pencilled the former Penrith Panthers and Melbourne Storm player

into his squad for Sunday's pre-season game at home to Batley Bulldogs.

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"His visa has come through and that's good news," said Matterson. "It has been a really quick process, because we only signed him last month.

"I probably wasn't expecting him to be here for the start of the season, so it is great – it is a real bonus."

Isa has been training at his former club and Matterson added: "He has had a full off-season with Melbourne – a really tough one, so he will be in as good nick as anyone here.

"He will be ready to go. We will have a look at him to see how he is, but he will probably get a bit of a run-out on Sunday."

Isa can play on the wing, but Matterson said he will feature at Cas as a centre, giving Tigers options in a position where they struggled at times last year.

"Before he came here, Ryan McGoldrick played all his footy at centre," Matterson recalled. "He played a bit in the centres in his first two years here as well.

"Brett Ferres did a really good job for us in the centres last season and we have got Jordan Thompson and Joe Arundel as well, so we have got some options.

"There's a few decisions to make and certainly the next couple of games are going to do that."

Matterson plans to field a strong team against Sunday's Co-op Championship visitors.

"Everyone who's fit will play," he said. "We have got a few niggles from training and a couple of people are recovering from off-season operations and if anyone's not 100 per cent, they won't be playing."

Winger/full-back Richard Owen – who suffered a badly broken leg last February – is back in training with the team and is expected to make his comeback in April.

Matterson said: "He is further down the track than we expected, but we're not going to get carried away and rush him."

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