Josh Reynolds is back in the NRL.
The former Hull FC star shone at the start of his career in Super League having left Wests Tigers to join the club.
But after injuries and other issues arose for Reynolds at Hull, the halfback left mid-season.
Now he is back at the club where his journey started, Canterbury Bulldogs.
Speaking of Six Tackles, Bulldogs’ Chief Phil Gould revealed that he got a text message from Reynolds asking to come back to the club but not necessarily to play.
Gould said: “I told this story at the season launch last night. I got a text message from Josh middle of last year just to say that he told his club [Hull FC] that he was finished playing, his playing days were over and that he was coming back to Sydney.
“He missed being at the Bulldogs and probably shouldn’t have left at the time that he did. It wasn’t about money or anything, he just wanted to come back and help at the club.
“He was prepared to work in the community section, sponsorship, marketing, junior pathways, whatever we could do for him. Did I think there might be an opportunity to come and have a talk about returning to the Bulldogs, to which I say yeah of course.
“There was never any any talk about him playing, none. None. I was actually even approached by people in the media that there was a rumour he was coming back to play, I said ‘no he’s not, it’s not what he said to me’.
“Whether Josh had those intentions I don’t know, he never said anything to me but when he got back to Australia I met with him and his manager around what the future might look like.
“He said he’d even train with the club, you’ve got a young squad there and Josh Jackson our captain had just retired. He said ‘if you want some leadership a training I’ll show them how be a bulldog, I’ll get in there and train and do the whole thing.
“He’d said ‘I want to be part of the football part, I’ll do the community part and all that sort of stuff instead but I’ll train with the group, even the young blokes.
“Then his manager said ‘what about a trial’, I told him if he could if he liked. In he’s come, he’s trained the house down, he’s 33 going on 34 and he’s really competed in there. The players love having him around, he’s very vocal.”
Gould then revealed why Reynolds got given a top 30 contract: “One of the issues we’re going to deal with is experienced depth and leadership. Josh Reynolds has been around for such a long time and he had no problem getting out there, telling people what to do, where to go, how to do it. He’s sort of running the show.
“The session went so well and Cameron Ciraldo came over to me at the end of the session and asked what I thought, I’d said he was good. He said, ‘yeah I think we need Josh Reynolds in the top 30, his leadership and his direction. He was really good, the players like being with him.’
“Anyway, Josh is sitting in a circle with the players discussing the session about 30 metres away so I called him over and said coach wants to talk to you. Cameron looked at me and froze, he said ‘oh you tell him’, so I told him. I said, ‘head coach wants you in the top 30, get your manager to give me a call on Monday’.
“I shook his hand and he just stood there and cried, he gave Cameron a big hug and I sort of left him at that.
“He thoroughly deserved it with the way he trained, his leadership around the boys as well. The Belmore people love having him around, he’s a huge personality and a favoured son of the whole club.”