St Helens confirm James Graham return

St Helens have confirmed the return of James Graham from the NRL on a deal until the end of the season.

Graham, 34, came through the Saints academy and made 225 appearances for the club before departing at the end of 2011 to join Canterbury Bulldogs.

He moved on to St George-Illawarra Dragons in 2018 but had been granted a release from his deal there to make the move home.

Graham told the club’s official website: “I am delighted to be returning home.

“St Helens has been a huge part of my life since I was a young boy. An opportunity to re-join the club I have watched from the stands is something I feel genuine excitement about.

“I want to thank the Dragons and everyone in the NRL for everything they have done for me and making this all possible. A massive thank you to Eamonn McManus, Mike Rush and Kristian Woolf for their help in making this move happen.

“I still believe I have a lot to offer on the field and I am excited about the rest of the season with St Helens.

“I can promise the fans that I will give everything for the badge to help bring us the opportunity of success.”

Graham helps to fill the void left by the early departure of England prop Luke Thompson, who is in line to make his debut for Canterbury this weekend.

Saints are due to return to Super League action on August 2, taking on Catalans Dragons.

Coach Kristian Woolf added: “I followed James’ career in the NRL closely as well as on the International stage. Given his profile and what he has achieved in the game, as an opposition coach, he is a player you make notes on and try and stop.

“His work rate and aggression is something I really like as well as his presence on the field. His experience is second to none and his leadership is something which will benefit, not just our younger blokes, but the whole group.

“He has real character and there are not many players who have played over 400 grade one games. What I have liked is his enthusiasm and desire to come back here and to be a part of our group.

“I am looking forward to working with him once our season resumes and seeing the positive influence he is sure to have.”

Graham was Man of Steel in 2008, and was part of the Saints side that won the treble in 2006 and then followed that up with World Club Challenge success in 2007.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.