Maria returns to Catalans

Catalans have re-signed their former forward Antoni Maria from Leigh on a two-year deal.

Maria, 30, made 36 appearances for the Dragons before moving to the Centurions at the end of 2016.

He said: “I’m really happy to come back to the Dragons. I had a long chat with Steve McNamara before making my decision and I really liked his speech.

“I feel he is taking the club in the right direction and I really want to be a part of it from next season. My season at Leigh helped me to gain experience and maturity.

“I would like to thank the club for giving me this opportunity and I’m looking forward to being back at the Gilbert Brutus Stadium to start the preseason once the World Cup will be over.”

Maria, who made his Super League debut back in 2012, is in the France squad for the World Cup and has also previously played for Toulouse.

Catalans coach Steve McNamara added: “I’m really pleased that Antoni is returning to the club after one season away.

“He will add quality and depth to our pack and increase much needed competition for places within the team. I personally feel it’s very important for us that we nurture, retain and recruit our French players.

“Our club has always been at its strongest when it’s had a strong core group of home grown players and the signing of Antoni helps us move in that direction.”

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