Leigh have signed Australian Cory Paterson from Salford on a three year deal.
Paterson, 28, is a vastly experienced utility player, with great experience in both the NRL and Super League and will join the Centurions in readiness for the start of pre season training.
Born in Perth, Western Australia, Paterson was schooled in Newcastle, NSW and after earning Australian Schoolboy International honours joined the Newcastle Knights, making his NRL debut in 2007. He later played for North Queensland Cowboys (from 2011) and Wests Tigers (in 2014), making a total of 96 NRL appearances and scoring 26 tries.
Paterson had a season with Hull KR in 2013, scoring seven tries in 17 games and came back to England to play for Salford Red Devils in the 2015 Super League campaign, scoring ten tries and kicking nine goals in 21 appearances.
Leigh Centurions head of rugby Derek Beaumont said: “Cory is a massive signing for us and is further testament to our intentions to build a squad capable of competing in Super League. He has stood out for Salford this season and has arguably been their best player in what has been a difficult season.
“Cory epitomises everything I like in a rugby player- he is a tough, skilful, big individual but also a top bloke off the field with a lovely family. I am particularly pleased that Cory has backed my vision and believes we can achieve our goals.
“It is always difficult signing high profile players when you are in the Championship and you need the commitment in your beliefs from players to have any chance. Cory is here for a long time despite which competition we are in and I can’t wait to see him don a Leigh jersey and entertain our fans who I know will be excited by this news and will make him and his family very welcome.”
Head coach Paul Rowley said: “I am delighted to welcome Cory to the Club and look forward to not only working with him but also listening to his thoughts and ideas on how best to achieve high standards.
“As the team progresses it is important to keep strengthening with quality players who will strengthen us on and off the field. I am sure Cory will use his experiences from within elite environments to enhance the off-field professionalism and culture within the Club. On behalf of the team I welcome himself, his wife Sarah and little fella Jax to the Centurion family.”