Raynor out to emulate boyhood heroes

James Gordon

New Featherstone winger Gareth Raynor could make his debut against former club Bradford, after he was revealed as Rovers’ latest signing on Sunday.

Raynor, 33, was unveiled at half time of the 24-0 win over Hunslet at the Bigfellas Stadium, and joins the Championship club having been released by the Bulls at the end of last season.

He said: “I know every inch of this place. I’ve been a Rovers’ fan all my life. To run out onto the same field, wearing the same colours as my boyhood heroes  Paul Newlove, Brendon Tuuta and Iva Ropati, means a hell of a lot. I never imagined it would happen.”

Although no stranger to off-field controversy in recent years, Raynor has a good pedigree on the rugby pitch, starting his career at Leeds before a successful six year spell at Hull where he picked up a Challenge Cup winners medal.

Featherstone Head Coach Daryl Powell said: “Gareth is a proven try scorer. He as energy and strength which will be invaluable coming from our own line. He gives us more depth in our three-quarters, and he is a proven, experienced international with massive Super League experience.”

Raynor, who has three caps for Great Britain, has also played for Crusaders and for Leeds and Leicester in rugby union.