Australian James Grehan moves to Castleford

Rugby League

Castleford have signed Australian utility player James Grehan from French side Limoux on a one-year contract.

The 23-year-old centre/back row, whose parents are English, was recommended to the club by former Cas forward Dale Fritz, Grehan's strength and conditioning coach at Western Suburbs.

"This is a big chance for me, I intend to make the most of it. I've always wanted to play here," said Grehan.

"I'm looking to earn a two-year deal and settle down over here."

Grehan, man of the match in Western Suburbs' Illawarra League Grand Final victory in September, becomes Cas's sixth close season signing for new coach Ian Millward.

He follows the arrival of Grant Millington (Canterbury Bulldogs), Josh Griffin (Huddersfield), Steve Nash (Leigh) and Warrington loan pair Lee Mitchell and Ryan Shaw.

And, although his initial opening could come at centre rather than in the pack, Millward is pleased at having signed a player with more than one string to their bow.

"Centre is an area where we are short in numbers," said the Cas coach. "And we needed depth in this position before the season started.

"Jimmy runs very good lines in attack and has good mobility in defence.

"He is more of a second row who can play centre, but we believe we might have unearthed someone on an incentive-based contract in Jimmy who we might want to tie down if things work out as a second row in the longer term.

"In the short term he will be useful in that he can do a good job for us in the centres.

"Dale Fritz contacted us and said we needed to have a look at him. He's in good shape, very athletic and defensively he brings some good qualities. With the team averaging 30 points a game last season, it was a case of asking ourselves whether we feel he can help improve our defence. We feel he can and that is why we have signed him."