Australian rugby league legend Greg Inglis has been tempted out of retirement by the Warrington Wolves, and has signed on to play for the Wire in Super League in 2021.
The 33-year-old had retired in April 2019 after injury contributed to him ending his glittering career, temporarily as it turned out.
Inglis maintained at the time that those shoulder and knee problems were not the main cause of his retirement, though.
He is now apparently relishing the chance to prove his greatness one more time.
“I’ve played over in England many times in representative footy and love how passionate and vocal the supporters are,” he said.
“To get the opportunity to live in the UK, to play for such a powerhouse club that I believe is on the rise is something I’m looking forward to and hopefully I can add value to the team.”
Inglis played 265 games in his NRL career, and played 39 times for the Kangaroos, with whom he won the World Cup in 2013.
The centre, who has also played at fullback and standoff in his career with the Melbourne Storm and South Sydney Rabbitohs, won 10 State of Origin titles with Queensland.
Wire chief executive Karl Fitzpatrick confirmed that Inglis was not a marquee signing for the club.
That means that the veteran centre will count fully on the salary cap. Fitzpatrick insists that the Australian is not signing for the wage packet, though.
“I know a number of people are commenting on Warrington’s salary cap but I can say that he absolutely is not coming over here for the money," said Fitzpatrick.
“His salary will reflect the current financial landscape, and he is not a marquee signing.
“Speaking to Greg absolutely reassured us that he is coming here for the right reasons."
Halfback partners Blake Austin and Gareth Widdop are the Wolves’ two marquee players as things stand.
The signing has been greeted with excitement by the UK rugby league community, with a true great of the game now set to illuminate Super League with his skills.
"At the start of this season, we had Sonny Bill Williams, James Maloney and many other star signings coming to the competition. Well, Greg Inglis just about puts all of those in the shade," said Sky Sports pundit Brian Carney.
"This is one of the best players ever to have played the game, voted one of the top two centres in the Australian competition in the past 30 years, and this is a name to put up in the highest of highlights for the competition."
While the signing has certainly brought excitement, the sport of rugby league in the UK is facing crippling financial uncertainty right now, thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Many Super League sides have had to apply for a share of the £16million lent to the sport by the UK Government.
A vote will take place soon with the Super League clubs set to decide whether the salary cap should be lowered as a result of the economic uncertainty.
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