Off-contract NRL hooker Josh Cook open to Super League offers

Drew Darbyshire
Josh Cook Ireland NRL SWpix

Photo: Will Palmer/SWpix

Ireland international Josh Cook says he would be open to playing in England next year after leaving NRL side Canterbury Bulldogs at the end of last season.

The 23-year-old, who is now a free agent, is currently representing Ireland at the World Cup, which is held in England.

Cook joined the Bulldogs ahead of 2022 after two seasons with South Sydney Rabbitohs, but left the club a year early.

“I didn’t take up my option with the Dogs so I’m just looking elsewhere now,” Cook told Love Rugby League.

“I’m hoping that whatever I do in this tournament can be a bit of exposure for me but at this point in time I’m just thinking of my job with Ireland and things will take care of themselves.

“I spoke to a few of the boys here who play in Super League. I’m very open to play footy as long as I get a good crack and a good dig, I’ll take any opportunity.

“I like it over here, the weather has been great to be honest, I’m really liking it. I really don’t mind it (the weather), I sometimes get over summer in Australia, it’s a bit too hot for me! But in terms of the rain it’s held off a bit in the last two weeks but it’s been good.”

Josh Cook loving life in Ireland camp

The Sydney-born hooker made his international debut for Ireland in their 48-2 win over Jamaica last week in their opening game of the World Cup. He qualifies to play for Ireland through his grandmother, who hails from Belfast.

“It’s been unreal, it’s been an exciting two weeks,” Cook told Love Rugby League. “All the planning and practice that we put in has been really good and I think we showcased that.

“All the boys bought in to what we wanted to do and we made a bit of a statement in our pool. We can only build on from here and look forward to Lebanon next.

“My grandma is from Belfast. She is a very proud Irishwoman and it was a great feeling wearing that jersey and singing the anthem, so I hope I made her proud.

“She lives back in Australia now so she made sure she stayed up to watch it. She’ll be very happy.

“It has been a dream of mine to represent where I’m from. Ireland is a very special place and my family is very proud of what we are building.”

Ireland face Lebanon in their second group game in Leigh on Sunday, October 23. A win would all but seal a place in the quarter-finals for the Wolfhounds.

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