Widnes sign Runciman from St George-Illawarra

Widnes Vikings have revealed that they have signed Australian centre Charly Runciman to add reinforcement to their squad for the Super Eights.

The 20-year-old former New South Wales Under-20 player will join up with his team-mates once his visa has arrived.

“I’m really looking forward to the opportunity to play with such a great club,” he said.

“I can’t wait to get over to the UK to play in front of all the passionate Vikings fans. It will be great to meet all my new teammates aswell. I can’t wait to get started as Vikings player.”

Vikings coach Denis Bettsis delighted to have added a player of such pedigree to his squad for the business end of the season.

“Charly is a fantastic acquisition for us at this stage in the season,” he said.

“He will give us a really big boost and his arrival will make for some great competition among our outside backs. Charly has a proven try scoring ability and will add some great quality to our edges.

“He is a strong centre with a fantastic left-foot kick. It will be great to have him over here as part of the Vikings set-up.”

Widnes chief executive James Rule explained how the club had been able to afford to make the signing.

“This year’s mid-season signing has been facilitated by an investment made by Backhouse Developments who have extended their partnership with Widnes Vikings until the 2016 season,” he said.

“Management of the salary cap is regulated by two key areas; the finite level of the cap and the 50 percent rule whereby clubs can only spend 50 percent of their total turnover on players.

“In order to allow for an un-budgeted in-season signing such as this, it was necessary for us to boost our turnover.

“The extension of our partnership with Backhouse Developments has allowed us to do just that and we are very grateful for the support of Luke Backhouse.

“We look forward to working with him as we continue to develop our club both on and off the field.”

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