New Widnes deal for Watts

Widnes have handed a new one-year deal to injured playmaker Anthony Watts.

Watts, 25, joined the Vikings in the close season after a spell with Sydney Roosters, but suffered a tear to his right anterior cruciate ligament just 10 minutes in to his Super League debut for the club against Salford in February.

The half-back or hooker had done enough in pre-season showings against Warrington and St Helens and off the field to impress the Vikings club, and will now remain at the Stobart Stadium for the 2013 season.

Widnes Director of Rugby Paul Cullen said: “Anthony’s dedication to recover from injury and his conduct both around the club and the local community have been exemplary.

“His commitment to perform to the very best of his abilities and his desire to play for Widnes Vikings are as significant as his potential to be a star in 2013.”

Watts has made more than 50 appearances in the NRL for Cronulla and North Queensland, but will have to wait until next season for his next taste of first team action.

He said: “I’m really happy to remain at the Vikings. Despite only being here for six months or so, I’ve fallen in love with the club and its passionate supporters.

“I genuinely believe that Widnes Vikings will be a huge force within the next few years and I want to be a part of that. This is the happiest I have been in a long time and I’m keen to repay the faith shown in me. Next year can’t come quick enough!”

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