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Five more youngsters sign Academy contracts

Five more Saints Scholarship graduates have signed Academy deals ahead of the Academy tour of Australia and the 2020 season.

Joe Wood, Kallem Rodgers, Kian Naylor, Owen Blackwood and Rio Corkhill will join a number of other youngsters who will make the jump to Academy level next season whilst also taking their place on this years’ Academy tour of Australia in October.

Wood, a big powerful prop, played at Blacbrook and attended St Augustines School. Joe has excellent handling skills, and although he missed the early scholarship games due to a knee injury, he performed really well in the later games.

Rodgers played at Orrell St James and attended Rose Bridge Academy. He has been a constant this season, playing in all the scholarship games and has really improved throughout the run of games. He is a very strong carrying and effective Winger.

Naylor played for Hindley before moving to Leigh East and attended Hindley High School. Kian missed some scholarship games through injury, but went really well in the games he did play. He is a very strong carrying forward who has a good short passing game and is a strong defender.

Blackwood played for Halton Hornets before moving to Blackbrook Royals. He attended St Peter and Pauls school and is a skillful centre who also had the privilege to represent England at Under 16 level in a test match against France earlier in the year.

Corkill played for Walney Central and attended St Bernard School in Barrow. Rio is a versatile youngster who has played in numerous positions throughout this season’s scholarship games and has impressed. He is quick on his feet and possess good handling skills.

Saints Performance, Welfare & Education Manager, Neil Kilshaw said: “Once again, I would like to thank all the community clubs, coaches, schools and volunteers who have helped these young players on their journey.

“We are delighted all five have decided to sign Academy contracts with the club and we look forward to developing them further both as rugby league players and as young adults here at St.Helens.”

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