Crusaders close in on new recruits

Crusaders boss Brian Noble is closing in on at least two new signings, as their debut season at Wrexham continues to blossom.

Fresh from their 14-6 triumph over Catalans on Friday, which saw Welsh rugby union legend Gareth Thomas make his debut, the club have revealed they are close to completing the formalities of a move for Wests Tigers full-back Rhys Hanbury, while deals for former State of Origin player Clinton Shifcofske, now at Ulster, and Penrith’s Jarrod Sammut are progressing.

Noble told the club’s official website: “We have got the prospect of signing some good players in the next week or so.

“I am interested in anybody I think will add to the club, first and foremost as players.”

The club have also been linked with two high profile signings from Welsh rugby union, in the shape of Gavin Henson and Andy Powell.

Noble added: “I am a fan of Andy Powell, I have said that publicly. I am also a fan of Gavin Henson.

“Some of the players in Welsh rugby union would make terrific rugby league players for sure.

“But nothing is ever done until it is done. Watch this space is all I can help you with.”

Hanbury, 24, who has played 22 games in the NRL for South Sydney and Wests, is a long rumoured signing for the Crusaders, and had previously been expected to make his debut earlier in the season against Wigan.

Fellow back Schifcofske, 34, enjoyed a prolific rugby league career with South Queensland, Parramatta and Canberra before switching codes to rugby union in 2007 to play for Super 14 side Queensland Reds.

Sammut, 23, is a Maltese international half-back, who has played around 40 games in the NRL for Penrith, and originates from Blacktown, Sydney, and has also been linked recently with a move to Catalans, as a replacement for Canberra-bound half-back Adam Mogg.

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