Mum’s the word for Eastwood

New Zealand World Cup winner Greg Eastwood will finally end an 18-month wait to become a Leeds Rhinos player on Friday night in Wrexham and he admits the first person he will phone after his debut is his mum back in Australia.

Eastwood originally signed for the Rhinos from Brisbane Broncos back in 2008 but had to spend last season on loan with Canterbury Bulldogs after his entry to the UK was delayed by red tape.

However, the New Zealand World Cup winner is now ready to begin the next chapter of his career and despite being thousands of miles away from home, he is still receiving the support of his family.

“My mum will be up back home regardless of what time of the morning it is, worrying about me making my debut. I’ll phone her as soon as the game is over so she can get some rest!” joked Eastwood.

Eastwood has been named in Brian McClennan’s 19 man squad for the season opener against Crusaders RL and he admits he is excited about the prospect of pulling on a Rhinos shirt for the first time despite not having featured in any of the club’s three pre-season victories.

“Everyone has been great for me since I arrived. The fans have been really excited to have me here and that has made me feel at home. I can’t wait to finally wear the blue and amber and become a Rhino. There were times last year when I wondered whether it would ever happen but I am just so happy to be here now.

“The guys have been great in training and we are looking forward to the challenge this season. I am pleased to have got the all clear on my wrist injury and there are no doubts over the injury. The club have been cautious with me so I haven’t played in the pre-season games but I will be playing off the bench so I will have a chance to get myself into the game.

“Hopefully I can build up my match fitness over the next few weeks so I am ready for Melbourne in the Gillette World Club Challenge,” added Eastwood.

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