Canterbury Bulldogs confirm signing of Leigh Leopards powerhouse Tom Amone from 2025

Drew Darbyshire
Tom Amone Leigh Leopards Alamy

Tom Amone in action for Leigh Leopards in 2024

NRL side Canterbury Bulldogs have confirmed the signing of Leigh Leopards prop Tom Amone on a two-year contract from 2025, as revealed by Love Rugby League earlier this week.

The 27-year-old powerhouse quickly became a fan favourite at Leigh following his arrival ahead of the 2022 season, making 70 appearances for the Leopards to date.

Amone helped Leigh win promotion to Super League in his first season before helping Adrian Lam’s side lift the Challenge Cup at Wembley last year, and was named in the 2023 Super League Dream Team alongside four of his Leigh team-mates in Josh Charnley, Lachlan Lam, Edwin Ipape and John Asiata.

The Australia-born front-rower, who is of Tongan heritage, will play out the rest of his contract with Leigh in Super League this season before returning to the NRL for 2025.

“We are very excited to have Tom Amone returning to the NRL,” Canterbury Bulldogs general manager of football Phil Gould said in the club’s signing announcement on Wednesday.

“He has been the best front row forward in the UK for the past two years and he will certainly be a boost to our forward stocks.

“We look forward to welcoming him to Belmore for the pre-season.”

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Leigh Leopards powerhouse Tom Amone to make NRL return in 2025

Amone made 17 appearances in the NRL for South Sydney Rabbitohs and Wests Tigers between 2019 and 2021, prior to his move to Leigh.

Speaking in his weekly press conference on Tuesday, Leigh coach Lam didn’t confirm nor deny Amone’s move when asked about it, but he did praise for the influential prop for the impact he has made at the Leopards.

Lam said: “It would be very difficult for us to replace him. I think once he arrived back into the 17, we started playing better rugby.

“When Tom came to us in the Championship, Tom was a 20-minute player off the bench, he wasn’t playing in the NRL, playing 20 minutes for us in the Championship, but what we do really well here I believe is we develop players.

“If we are to lose Tom at some stage – because I know he is passionate about going back and trying to get back in the NRL – along with the other Aussie players that come to us, we understand that.

“But what we do well here is we develop the players and if we do lose Tom for whatever reason, that’s a possibility, if that happens and if we do lose Lachlan Lam one day, and if we do lose Edwin Ipape and if we do lose anyone else that’s from Australia, we’ll deal with it, we’ll get on with it.

“It’s not ideal for us but what excites me about situations like that is that we will take the next player to come in and we will develop them to be like a Tom Amone.”

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