When Castleford Tigers signed Jordan Turner from Huddersfield on a one-year deal, a few eyebrows were raised.
Having been left on the periphery at the John Smith’s Stadium and approaching his 32nd birthday, some felt that Turner’s career was winding down.
However, like with many other outcasts, Castleford head coach Daryl Powell took a punt on the former St Helens, Salford and Hull FC utility man.
Turner began his life at the Tigers on the wing – outside skipper Michael Shenton – before games in the halves, centres and even in the pack due to injuries well and truly underlined his ‘utility’ tag.
With two superb games at centre in recent weeks, Turner has well and truly rejuvenated himself at the Jungle, and Powell could not be more pleased.
“I think he’s been class, wherever he’s played,” Powell said.
“He’s got a great relationship with Michael Shenton, we looked at how we would put the pieces together on that left edge before the season started and he played on the wing and then switched to the centre.
“He’s coming up with big plays and he’s a big dude, carries the ball incredibly well and he’s playing some of the best rugby of his career.
A two-try haul in Castleford’s stellar victory over Hull FC last night – a win that was made even more impressive considering talisman Paul McShane went off injured in the 14th minute – highlighted just how important Turner has become to this Tigers outfit.
And, with the ink still drying on a new two-year deal, that importance is likely to continue under the reign of incoming boss Lee Radford.