North East Connected

Young extends Thunder stay into 2018

Rugby League side Newcastle Thunder’s preparations for 2018 have been boosted with the news that fullback Lewis Young has agreed on a new one-year contract.

It marks something of a coup for Thunder, as they beat off competition from a host of clubs across all leagues to keep the talented player for a third season.

Young, who was named Kingstone Press League 1 Young Player of the Season has shone throughout the year with a series of standout performances that have showcased his pace and footwork.

Switching to the fullback position at the start of this year, Young has developed into a potent attacking threat with his mazy runs causing plenty of problems for attacking defences.

A former junior at Redhill ARLFC back in his hometown of Castleford, Young originally joined Thunder in mid-2016 while studying at Northumbria University. After impressing in his debut year has progressed even further in 2017 with twenty tries from his 24 appearances.

With the club making real strides on the pitch, the 22-year-old has dropped plans to relocate to Australia and committed himself to another year at least in the club’s colours.

Speaking of his new deal, Young said: “I’ve really enjoyed the last 2 years here at Thunder and that is why I am pleased and happy to be staying for another year.

“Australia has been on the cards all year but seeing the club’s ambitions for the next couple of years has been a massive factor in my decision to stay.

“All the lads feel that we can go one step further next season and hopefully we can be challenging somewhere close to the top.  And I’m really excited to be a part of that!

Head Coach Jason Payne said: “I’m really pleased that Lewis has decided to stay with us for another year, its a real statement of intent from us considering the amount of interest there was from other clubs.

“Lewis is a hugely talented player that I have been coaching for 5 years now at Thunder and Northumbria University.  It has been great to see him develop over this period and what’s exciting is that he still has tons of improvement in him. His versatility also means we have options to play him at fullback, hooker or in the halves.

“He worked really hard this year and has been given lots of individual recognition which he deserves; I’m looking forward to what he can produce in 2018”

Young is Thunder’s seventh signing for the new campaign, joining Ben Pointer, Tom Capper, David Weetman, Liam McAvoy, Vincent Rennie and Evan Simons in the squad for 2018.

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