Featherstone Rovers sign ex-Huddersfield Giants, Bradford Bulls and Wakefiield Trinity prop Craig Kopczak.
EXPERIENCED Wakefield Trinity prop Craig Kopczak has signed for Featherstone Rovers - whichever division they end up in.
The former Wales captain, 33, has joined the Championship club on a one-year deal.
He was released by Wakefield at the end of the season having played at Belle Vue for the last two campaigns.
Featherstone, of course, have entered the bidding process to join Super League in 2021 as the replacement club for Toronto Wolfpack.
They face competition from Bradford Bulls - where Kopczak started his Super League career in 2006 - London Broncos, Toulouse Olympique, Leigh Centurions and York City Knights with a decision expected in just over a week’s time.
Kopczak, who won the 2013 League Leaders’ Shield during his time with Huddersfield Giants, said: “I’m over the moon to be here and I’m looking forward to the challenge ahead.
“Featherstone is a big club, James Webster is a great coach and there are some great players in the team.
“If the Super League application is successful that will be great.
“If not, I can use my experience and leadership in the Championship to push for a Super League position through promotion in 2021.”
Kopczak does certainly have plenty of both; he played more than 100 Super League games for hometown Bradford and spent three years with Huddersfield before joining Salford Red Devils whom he also captained.
Kopczak skippered Wales in the 2013 World Cup and again four years later when the tournament was held Down Under, winning 21 caps in total.
Webster said: “Craig brings us plenty of size and experience having played over 300 Super League games.
“Adding him has really strengthened competition for places in the middle of the pitch.
“With what we have seen this year in how coronavirus has affected the availability of players in Super League, having strength in depth in the middle positions was a vital area we needed to secure.”
Rovers do have some quality in their front-row and Kopczak also links up once more with two of his pack colleagues from the Huddersfield side that finished top of Super League in 2013 - Brett Ferres and Dale Ferguson.
Featherstone football manager Steve Gill added: “I’m pleased to be able to bring Craig to the club.
“He adds a real presence to our already strong set of middles.
“I believe he will add further to what is a great culture we are building here at Featherstone and will add real competition for places, demanding more from everybody around him.”
Elsewhere, Salford have confirmed the signing of ex-England winger Joe Burgess from Wigan Warriors.
Burgess, 26, joins on a three-year deal and says he wants to use the move to force his way back into the international side ahead of the 2021 World Cup.