Super League: Widnes Vikings sign Danny Galea from Canterbury
Widnes Vikings have confirmed the signing of back rower Danny Galea from NRL side Canterbury Bulldogs for next season.
Last Updated: 30/08/13 1:21pm
The 29-year-old made his league debut for Penrith in 2002 and has played in more than 130 first grade games for the Panthers, Wests Tigers and Canberra Raiders.
But Galea is excited by his imminent move to Super League and admits former Tigers team-mate Rhys Hanbury was one of the reasons he is making the move to the Stobart Stadium.
"I'm good mates with Rhys Hanbury from our time spent alongside each other at the Tigers, and I've spoken with him on a number of occasions about my desire to come overseas and give it a go," he told the club's official website.
"I've obviously spoken with (Widnes head coach) Denis Betts too. He also gave me a run-down on the way things are done at Widnes and what will be expected of me, when I join the group.
"From day one, everything has run smoothly and the process of sorting out the contract was easy.
"Of course, there are always a few people who try to warn you not to make the jump from competition to competition and tell you that you'll regret it but I have no doubt whatsoever in my mind that I've made the right decision.
"I'm contracted to the Bulldogs until the end of October, but I'm hoping to be over in Widnes the following week."
Betts is backing Galea to be a success in the UK, although he admitted he may be an unknown quantity to British rugby league fans.
"We were looking for a solid, hard-working club man to come in and do a good job for us, make us a better team and contribute to the whole organisation," he said.
"Danny is a really strong back rower and a great defensive player, and we've had lots of good wraps on him, coming out of Australia.
"A lot of people may not know who he is immediately, but he has a fantastic pedigree and is a former Australian Schoolboys representative.
"He's played a large number of NRL games at First Grade level and I'm confident that he will surprise a few people when he comes over to these shores and runs out onto the field for us.
"Danny will bring plenty of leadership qualities, hunger, enthusiasm and a wealth of knowledge with him, and the younger players in our group will only benefit from having him as team-mate and a part of the group."