Matty Russell joins Toronto Wolfpack

Rugby League
Matty Russell
Matty Russell

Scotland international Matty Russell has become the latest high-profile capture for Toronto Wolfpack as the Canadian club step up their assault on Super League.

The 24-year-old winger or full-back has followed his former Warrington team-mate Ashton Sims to the Wolfpack after agreeing an immediate release from the Wolves.

Russell, who began his career with Wigan, has signed a two-and-a-half-year deal with the Betfred Championship leaders, who will play their first game of the season in Canada against Swinton on Saturday.

Toronto head coach Paul Rowley said: "We are happy to welcome Matty to the Wolfpack.

"He is going to add more quality and competition to the backline. I'm really looking forward to seeing Matty pull on the Wolfpack jersey."

Russell will be eligible to play against Warrington in the sixth round of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup on Sunday week.

He said: "I'm really looking forward to playing in Toronto. I kept an eye on the club last year and to see how well it was going. It was great to see for rugby league.

"For my family to watch me play in Toronto will be an unreal experience!"

Russell will link up with another ex-Warrington play, Gareth O'Brien, at the Wolfpack, who recently added NRL duo Chase Stanley and Darcy Lussick to their imposing squad.

Meanwhile, the club have appointed former Samoa and Australia international Reni Maitua as player welfare manager after he hung up his boots for the second time.

The 35-year-old former Canterbury Bulldogs and Parramatta back-row forward came out of retirement to join the Wolfpack for the start of the season and played in eight of their first 14 matches.

Maitua, who also played for Featherstone, Salford and Leigh before announcing his retirement at the end of 2016, said: "What an experience it has been to be part of a club that is making history.

"It's been an absolute pleasure to wear the Wolfpack jersey.

"Moving forward I have the privilege of being able to help create a culture and brand that represents Toronto and Canada as a whole as well as supporting our players and staff through any life experiences, both good and bad, on and off the field.

"Having said that, I'll never say this is my final farewell. I'll continue to train with the team and be a leader for this great club."

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