New man Naughton in line for Tigers test

Leigh Centurions have signed Curtis Naughton on loan
Leigh Centurions have signed Curtis Naughton on loan

Curtis Naughton is in line to face Castleford this Friday after arriving at the Centurions on a season-long loan.

The outside back signed for Leigh on Tuesday morning, taking up squad number 
30.

We will be coming up against world class players and coaches every week and there will be a jump in intensity

Neil Jukes

Following injuries in preseason to Gregg McNally and James Clare plus the release of Lee Smith from his contract, Neil Jukes went on the search for cover.

Naughton has been on the fringes of the Hull FC side with eight tries in 16 games and spent part of last season on loan at Huddersfield.

“We have worked really hard to get here,” said Jukes.

“We will be coming up against world class players and coaches every week and there will be a jump in intensity.

“While we are going to try and enjoy ourselves we need to back it up with some good performances. I was pleased with some aspects of our displays against Wigan and Dewsbury but on Friday we face a very good Castleford side.

“I am confident that we are where we need to be and we will be ready for what is a tough test. We have got some good quality in the squad and players who can do a job in a number of positions. There is good competition for places and players know they will have to perform to keep their spot.”

Owner Derek Beaumont said: “I am sure Curtis will enjoy his time with us and prove to be good cover for Gregg and James, whom we wish a speedy recovery.”

It has been a busy week for Jukes as he fronted up to the rugby league press at the Betfred Super League season launch which was held at Leigh Sports Village.

He will name his first squad imminently and hopes are high that Martyn Ridyard will feature after missing both of Leigh’s preseason wins against Wigan and Dewsbury.

Castleford are expected to make a push for the top four this season despite losing their top try scorer from last year Denny Solomona to rugby union.

Under coach Daryl Powell, they have made good progress in recent years and are always strong at the Mend-a-Hose Jungle.

Leigh have a poor record at the ground but they will not be short of support with more than 1,000 fans making the trip across the Pennines to support the Centurions on Friday.