‘Bad boy’ Bailey joins Warrington Wolves

Ryan Bailey

Ryan Bailey

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Former Leeds Rhinos, Castleford Tigers and Hull KR prop Ryan Bailey has been handed a surprise chance to revive his career.

Bailey has signed for Warrington Wolves on a one-year contract, which will reunite him with ex-Leeds coach Tony Smith.

Bailey won the first of his six Grand Final rings under Smith in 2004, also earning a Great Britain call-up at the end of that season.

He played for Leeds from 2002-2013, but was released a year ago to join Hull KR. He made just one appearance for Rovers before being freed from his contract last March.

The 32-year-old - who has a ‘bad-boy’ reputation - joined Castleford the following month and made six appearances, but was not offered a deal for next season.

Smith said: “It is no secret Ryan has had a chequered past.

“However, he is fully aware of the special conditions set out within his contract and the standards expected of all Warrington Wolves players.

“During my time coaching Ryan at Leeds we had a fantastic relationship and I never experienced any issues.

“He is fully aware that some of his past behaviours were unacceptable. However, at times we need to give people a second chance.

“I have every faith that we can develop his game and see the solid and hard working player I know he can be.”

Smith added: “Ryan’s signature is not going to impact greatly on our salary cap, but his experience and attributes will make him an extremely valuable squad player.

“I’ve spoken to the players and explained the rationale behind the signing. They were very supportive and look forward to working with Ryan in the upcoming season.”

Bailey said: “I am really excited by my move to the Warrington Wolves and working under Tony again.

“There is a strong and exciting squad being assembled for 2016. It is no secret that in the past I have had some issues, but all that is now behind me.

“I had some of my best form under Tony. I think he knows how to get the best out of me. I can’t wait to meet up with the boys, knuckle down and get stuck into pre-season.”

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