Credit:@Swinton_Lions on Twitter
Swinton Lions have announced a trio of new signings ahead of the 2019 Betfred Championship season, including Scottish international Oscar Thomas.
Thomas, who has joined on a one-year deal from Sheffield Eagles, scored three tries and 22 conversions in 18 appearances last season from half-back.
The 24-year-old made his debut for hometown club London Broncos as a teenager, before moving on to Bradford Bulls.
The former Super League star had reportedly been offered deals in Rugby League and Union, but opted to stay in the League system.
He has made 11 appearances for Scotland since 2014, including scoring a try for the Bravehearts at the Rugby League World Cup in 2017 against New Zealand.
Lions Head Coach Stuart Littler said, “Oscar is an experienced championship player who has previously been at London, Bradford and Sheffield. ”
Club Chairman Andy Mazey also commented on the new signing, explaining that Thomas is a player who had been scouted for sometime.
Furthermore, Mazey went on to say; “I believe we are getting a player who has it all in his locker and electric pace and firmly believe he can return to Super League at some stage so this is an exciting capture for our club and the final piece of the jigsaw in terms of our 2019 recruitment.”
Young duo Ashley Warne and Matty Ashton have also signed for the Lions after impressing head coach Stuart Littler.
✍ SIGNING | LIONS SIGN DUO WARNE AND ASHTON FOR 2019 SEASON
— Swinton Lions RLFC (@Swinton_Lions) December 11, 2018
Warne came through the academy at Salford Red Devils, before settling at Bury Broncos.
Following a successful trial in pre-season, the loose-forward earned his first professional contract.
The 23-year-old had been recommended to the Lions by former Swinton half-back Graham Holroyd.
Congratulations to Ash Warne on earning a contract with @Swinton_Lions ? ?
— Bury Broncos (@BuryRL) December 11, 2018
Matt Ashton impressed in his development at community side Rochdale Mayfield.
Ashton has also had a stint down under, having played fullback for the Northern River Rugby League Club Mullumbimby Giants.
These three signings are a signal of intent from Swinton, who will be looking to improve on their 11th place finish in the Betfred Championship last season.
The club have also announced a new assistant head coach during the end season break, with Allan Coleman succeeding Tommy Gallagher.