New signing Glenn Stewart has revealed that the transition in moving from the South of France to Leigh has been stress-free.
The 32-year- old joined the Centurions in late September after being released by Super League’s only French side Catalans Dragons for family reasons.
My family love it here. I have moved up the road since I arrivedGlenn Stewart
Stewart has previously declared that he wants to help take the club to the next level, and he will be the most experienced player in Neil Jukes’ team for 2017 after playing 12 years in Australia’s NRL for Manly Sea Eagles and South Sydney Rabbitohs.
Despite living in Australia, France and now England all within the last three years, the back-rower has revealed that the settling in period has been easy.
“The transition has been really good and a lot of that has to do with the club,” Stewart said. “Leigh have been very helpful right from the transport over here, getting visas and all of that stuff.
“There was a lot that had to go into the move before you start worrying about training so I can’t thank the club enough and so far the pre-season is going well, it is hard but the boys all seem like good blokes.”
The ex-Australia international made 185 appearances and scored 27 tries in his 11 year spell at the Sea Eagles and stellar displays in the NRL saw him represent his native New South Wales five times in State of Origin between 2009 and 2012.
Stewart admitted that one of the main reasons for leaving the Dragons one-year into his contract was because him and his family found living in France difficult.
He added: “The language barrier has been a big one, even just little things like going to the shops and doing things like that has been much easier.
“My family love it here. I have moved up the road since I arrived so my son will go to a school near there.
“I get home in around 15 minutes and we are going to have Christmas here. I know it is cold so hopefully we will get our first white Christmas but we will cross our fingers!”
Glenn’s brother Brett, who currently plays for NRL outfit Manly Sea Eagles, has been linked with a move to the Centurions recently but it has gone no further than the rumour mill just yet.
However, Glenn admitted that plans are in place for his brother to visit the Leigh Sports Village in 2017.
“We have things like FaceTime so we do see them [family] nearly every second day but a lot of them have already booked in trips next year,” said Stewart.
“I have got my mum and dad coming over and maybe even my brother’s [Brett] and sister’s family so it [the move] hasn’t affected us at all.
“It’s an easier transition here in regards to the family, the kids, the language plus the Centurions have been great so there hasn’t been any hiccups or anything to complain about – I am just looking forward to next year.”
Stewart says avoiding relegation from Super League is the very least the club want to achieve in the upcoming campaign.
He said: “Staying up is the bare minimum.
“We are starting to get a good idea of where we are at so we will meet together before Christmas and we have got a trip away to Lanzarote for a week and we will then set some goals of the players and then for what Jukesy [Neil Jukes] and the coaching staff want but we just cannot wait for the season to start.”