Leeds Rhinos sign record try scorer Luke Briscoe from Featherstone Rovers

Betfred Championship.'Batley Bulldogs v Featherstone Rovers.'Rovers Luke Briscoe skips  away from Batley's James Brown.'24th March 2018.'Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe
Betfred Championship.'Batley Bulldogs v Featherstone Rovers.'Rovers Luke Briscoe skips away from Batley's James Brown.'24th March 2018.'Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe
0
Have your say

Record-breaking winger Luke Briscoe will make his third debut for Leeds Rhinos against Catalans Dragons at Emerald Headingley on Wednesday.

Rhinos have signed the 24-year-old from Featherstone Rovers, but he could be back playing for the Betfred Championship side almost immediately.

Briscoe will replace Ryan Hall, who is in Denver with the England squad ahead of Saturday’s Test against New Zealand, in the side for this week’s crucial four-pointer.

Leeds will line up against Catalans with Luke Briscoe on one wing and his elder brother Tom on the other.

Luke Briscoe was not named in Rhinos’ initial 19-man squad, but will be added in place of Jordan Lilley who has failed a fitness test on a foot injury.

He is believed to be the first player in Leeds’ history to be re-signed by them twice.

Born in Featherstone, but signed from Hull, he played for Rhinos in 2014 and had a spell with Hunslet and on-loan for Wakefield before rejoining Leeds two years later.

Though both clubs’ website described it as a “loan” deal, Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington stressed Leeds have signed Briscoe until the end of the season, but confirmed he will be available to Rovers on dual-registration.

The dual-registration system does not allow players to move from Championship to Betfred Super League clubs and had Rhinos signed him on loan for Wednesday’s game Rovers would have been unable to recall him for a month. The signing means he will be available to Rovers at short notice.

Hetherington said: “He has been transferred from Featherstone to Leeds Rhinos.

“He is a contracted Rhinos player and will be on our payroll.

“He will be available to play for Leeds Rhinos and also for Featherstone Rovers as a dual-registration player.”

Briscoe had been contracted to Rovers for 2019 and is expected to rejoin them in the closed-season.

Hetherington added: “At the end of the season Featherstone Rovers and Leeds Rhinos and Luke himself will assess plans for 2019.

“He could well return to Featherstone, in a sense Featherstone will have an option to take him back.

“A lot will depend on how he is progressing and everything else.

“That is the strength of the relationship the two clubs have got.”

A Rovers statement said: “We are proud to boast a hugely-successful and fruitful partnership with Leeds Rhinos, which has benefited our club a great deal over the past three years.

“The Rhinos have been there for us in the club’s hour of need, on several occasions and Leeds have come to us for support during a difficult period of their own, as injuries continue to hamper their progress.

“We are happy to assist the Leeds club by allowing Luke to join the Rhinos on a relatively short-term basis.”

Briscoe has scored 28 tries in 19 games this season for Rovers.

Last month he equalled the all-time British rugby league record when he scored in Rovers’ 17th consecutive match.