York City Knights have announced the signing of Australian back-rower Bailey Antrobus from St George Illawarra Dragons on a deal until the end of the 2022 season.
Antrobus, 22, has come through the Dragons’ system in recent years and, ahead of this campaign, was handed a training contract with their NRL squad.
York’s latest recruit will hoping that strong performances throughout the remainder of this season for the Knights will lead to inclusion in the Welsh squad for this winter’s Rugby League World Cup with Antrobus included in the train-on squad named last year.
On Antrobus’ arrival, Head Coach James Ford said: “I’m really pleased to welcome Bailey to the Club. He is a versatile, athletic young player who has played at a good level in Australia.
“Bailey comes well recommended by people we hold in high regard in Australia and, having looked at a fair number of his games, I think he has a lot of promise and I’m looking forward to working with him.
“He fits into our strategy in that he’s young, hungry, up and coming and keen to fulfil his ambitions and we’re really excited to get to know him, build that relationship and help him to do so.
“The back row was a position that we highlighted earlier in the year where we thought we we could do with looking for added cover and competition. We hold Toby Warren in the highest of regards in terms of potential and we think there is a lot there.
“He’s on loan at Leeds at the minute where he is really enjoying his game and improving week on week. We didn’t want to disrupt that as playing regular rugby is important for his development.
“Bailey certainly hasn’t come in to replace Toby; he’s come in to supplement and add to our options in the back row and to compete with people like Toby for a spot in our team.
Discussing his arrival at the Knights, Antrobus said: “Of course I’m delighted to be here! It’s great to experience something different halfway around the world and, with the team sitting third, it’d be great to help the team push towards Super League.
“I was looking for something a bit different. It wasn’t quite working out at my club but still, I’d like to say a great thanks to them for everything they’ve done. I wanted to move and push for a top league so I spoke to my manager and, after talking about my British heritage, we started looking over here.”