Wigan Warriors confirm signing of highly-rated forward from Leeds

Josh McAllister
Sam Walters, SWPix

Picture by Ed Sykes/SWpix.com.

Wigan Warriors have confirmed the signing of Sam Walters from Leeds Rhinos for the 2024 season on a three-year deal. 

Walters, 22, joined the Rhinos academy from Widnes in 2019, winning academy player of the year in his debut season.

He made his Super League debut in the back-row against Catalans in September 2020 and has gone on to make a further 28 appearances in the competition, scoring five tries.

The highly-rated forward featured from the bench during the 2022 Super League Grand Final at Old Trafford against St Helens.

Leeds boss Rohan Smith confirmed earlier in May that utility forward Walters had rejected a ‘massive upgrade’ to extend his stay at Headingley Stadium.

Young winger Liam Tindall is also expected to leave Leeds at the end of the current campaign. As the Rhinos struggle and speculation persists over the long-term future of Smith, you do not need to be a bet company to know the odds of them keeping hold of their best youngsters are only increasing at the moment.

Sam Walters makes move to DW Stadium

Walters said: “I am looking forward to joining Wigan Warriors next season.

“To be part of such a successful team is exciting and I can’t wait to develop my game and become a small part in future success.”

He added: “Thank you to Leeds Rhinos for the last few years but I felt the time was right for me to take on this challenge. “

Wigan head coach Matt Peet commented: “Sam has the skill and stature to play through the middle or as a back rower.

“We look forward to welcoming him and supporting him to fulfil his undoubted potential.”

He becomes Wigan’s second signing in as many days following the capture of ex-Leeds skipper Kruise Leeming on a massive four-year contract from next season.

Leeming, 27, will return from the NRL ahead of next year to link up with the DW Stadium side.

The hooker left Leeds earlier this season to link up with the Gold Coast Titans on a deal until the end of the current campaign Down Under.

Peet said on the signing: “Kruise is an outstanding hooker who we believe will be a great fit for Wigan.

“We are delighted to secure him for what should be the best years of his career.”

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