Former Woman of Steel signs for Leeds Rhinos Women

Preparations for Leeds Rhinos Women’s 2022 season have begun with the signing of former Woman of Steel Georgia Roche.

The England international played in the first ever Super League with Featherstone Rovers Ladies and was a try scorer in their Grand Final defeat to Bradford Bulls.

A year later the 21 year-old joined Castleford Tigers and scored three tries in their 20-14 loss to the Rhinos in the Challenge Cup Final.  That year she was also named the first ever Woman of Steel and was nominated for the BBC Young Sports Personality of the Year.

The stand off was a League Leaders Shield winner with Castleford in 2019 and played in the Challenge Cup and Women’s Grand Final against the Rhinos.

On the international scene she made a scoring debut in England’s 54-4 win over France in 2018.  A year later she earned selection for England’s test series to Papua New Guinea and the World 9s tournament in Australia.

The Batley born player began playing rugby with her Drighlington before moving to Dewsbury Moor where she played alongside Leeds players Caitlin Beevers and Elle Frain and grew up supporting the Rhinos.

Speaking about joining the club she said: “I am really excited to be joining the club. I know the team has really high ambitions and expectations and I am looking forward to trying to meet them myself and pushing and challenging against the players that are already here to make a mark in that squad.

“I’ve played with some of the girls when I was younger so it will be good to play with them again. I am hoping to take that step to the next level to this elite environment that we all talk about and the elite training and coaching.

“I would like to say a massive thank you to Castleford Tigers, the girls and the past coaching staff and the coaching staff this year and the girls that stuck with us. Without them I wouldn’t be the player I am today so just a big thank you and everything is appreciated.

“When I was at Castleford we were in the same environment that we wanted to get to the Final and look to win it so to come to another club that has the same ambitions is massive and hopefully we manage to achieve success next season.”

Leeds Rhinos Women’s head coach Lois Forsell, who played against Roche against in the 2017 and 2018 season said: “This is an absolutely massive signing for us. She has been around the Women’s game for a long time for a young age. She’s performed really well and we are really excited to bring her to the club and hopefully it will bring her game to another level and she will really enjoy representing the Rhinos.

“She will bring some leadership and some creativity, passion and experience.  The signing shows intentions of what we are looking to do next year. Obviously on the back our Grand Final we are disappointed with that result but we are planning for next year and really looking forward to going out there and achieving our potential.”