Former Warrington Wolves youngster Riley Dean has landed himself a club in Australia after his release from the Wire earlier this month, with Mackay Cutters announcing that they had signed the 22-year-old.
Dean struggled to earn a starting spot at Warrington despite their rollercoaster season, however he was sat behind England captain George Williams and overseas talent and 2023 signing Josh Drinkwater.
During the times in which Williams found himself injured Dean acquitted himself well but he found most of his Super League success in 2023 with Castleford Tigers during a loan spell at Wheldon Road.
He’s previously started the season off on loan with Championship side Featherstone Rovers and was a key cog in why Sean Long’s side were so dominant, but Warrington quickly recalled him to try incorporate him into their playing squad.
It was confirmed by Warrington come the end of the season that Dean would be leaving the Halliwell Jones Stadium for an opportunity down under, something they confirmed via their social media channels on November 1st.
The statement read: “Riley Dean has left the club by mutual agreement to pursue a playing opportunity in Australia.
“Best of luck in your next chapter down under, Riley”
Just a day later the Mole from Wide World of Sports reported that Dean would be linking with North Queensland Cowboys feeder side Mackay Cutters, a team in the Queensland Cup that fellow former Castleford Tigers man Kenny Edwards joined this off-season.
The Mole reported for WWOS: “The Cowboys will be on the hunt for a top class halfback in coming years and they may have found one from out of the box, with one of the most promising halfbacks in England joining their feeder team Mackay this week.
“Riley Dean, a 22-year-old playmaker, has come to terms with the Cutters with hopes of working his way into the Cowboys squad.”
Just three weeks later and that has come true with Mackay taking to their Facebook page to confirm the arrival of Dean, a major move for the young man and one where he will have every chance of success.
A post on the team’s Facebook page read: “The Mackay Cutters are delighted to announce the key signing of Riley Dean for season 2024.
“Riley has joined the Cutters from the UK where he has played 14 Super League games for Warrington and Castleford. He is a strong-running and skilful half who continually challenges the opposition defensive line!
“We are looking forward to seeing Riley in action in the Cutters colours in 2024 #cutters”