Ormondroyd and Walters leave Rhinos for Featherstone

Leeds Rhinos have agreed to transfer forwards Josh Walters, 24, and Jack Ormondroyd, 27, to Betfred Championship side Featherstone Rovers with immediate effect. 

Super League winner Walters scored the decisive try for Leeds Rhinos in their 2015 Super League Grand Final victory over Wigan Warriors and has made 89 professional appearances.

Walters said: “I’m really excited to get involved. I’ve been down for a a couple of games already this year, but it’s good to make the move here.

“It’s a really good squad this year at Featherstone and Ryan’s come in as coach.

“He’s done a lot of one-to-one stuff with me already, which is a really positive thing. Now I just want to give my all for Featherstone. I just want us to achieve to our potential.

“We’ve got some big name overseas signings with some really good local lads as well, so we can do some big things in the Championship this year.”

Walters will be a familiar face to the supporters at the LD Nutrition Stadium, having previously made 21 appearances for the club, on dual-registration from Leeds Rhinos.

Jack Ormondroyd has made his return to Featherstone and was last contracted to the Rovers in 2016, before making a move to Super League side Leeds Rhinos.

Ormondroyd said: ”It’s good to be somewhere where I can really be part of it and get some consistency. My best season was my final year at Featherstone, so now I want to get back to that.”

The 27-year-old prop has made 76 appearances for Featherstone and is three matches away from a century of professional appearance at competitive senior level, having represented York City Knights as well as the Rovers and Rhinos.

Leeds Rhinos Director of Rugby Kevin Sinfield said, “On behalf of everyone at the club, I would like to thank Josh and Jack for their commitment to the club during their time at Emerald Headingley. As a team mate, Josh was a key member of our squad over many years and I am sure both players will thrive on the challenge with Featherstone.”

Featherstone Rovers head coach Ryan Carr said: “Josh is great to have around. He has great energy at training and in the game.

“He brings a lot of enthusiasm, intent and experience. He’s done a lot in a successful career so far and I’m sure he’s got a lot ahead of him too. 

“He knows the playing group here and I’ve worked closely with him in the preseason while he’s been here through dual-reg and he’s been great.

He added: “His versatility is great for us. He’s got a great skillset and he’s only 24, so I envisage he’s still got a heap of improving to do from all the success he’s had, he’s going to have a lot more to come.

“This move should give him more consistency in his game and hopefully get the best out of him for himself and the club.

“It’s good to have Jack here. We really love having him and he’s played a lot of footy for us.He’s really familiar with the club and the team, and the boys love playing with him.

“He’ll be a really good asset for us to have now and I’m looking forward to working with him more and more.”

Walters and Ormondroyd will be available for selection in Featherstone’s home opener against Batley Bulldogs at the LD Nutrition Stadium on Sunday (3pm kick-off).

Featherstone Rovers CEO Davide Longo said: “Bringing these two forwards in adds to what is already a very strong squad for this season’s Championship campaign.

“They are two players who Ryan knows well and they should be raring to go for Sunday’s home opener against Batley Bulldogs.

“We now need the supporters to fill the stands on Sunday and get behind the team to kick-start what should be a great season of action at the LD Nutrition Stadium.

“The players that have come into the squad in recent weeks have brought it’s ability up to the elite level in the Championship.

“We now need to make sure that the support is in place to see them realise their potential on Sunday.”