Swinton Lions have been unveiling their squad for the 2022 season.
It’s been a busy few weeks for Swinton Lions as they put together a squad, hopefully, capable of bouncing straight back up to the Championship after relegation last season.
Most recently, they have announced that forward Jose Kenga has extended his contract to play for the Lions in the upcoming 2022 season.
He becomes the fifteenth player to be unveiled ahead of the new season, with ten more places still to fill and a sixteenth to be unveiled at 6PM this evening.
Our third row is complete! Let us know who you think is going to start our fourth row? 👀🦁 pic.twitter.com/JwqgCU9Vnp
— Swinton Lions RLFC (@Swinton_Lions) November 2, 2021
The first announced signing was centre or wing Reece Hamlet, who impressed whilst on loan at the club from Bradford Bulls in the last campaign.
Head Coach Allan Coleman is assembling a promising, young squad to achieve instant promotion back to the second tier and be part of a more successful future at Heywood Road.
He said: “I’m a big believer in people wanting to make a name for themselves in the game.
“I think if you get that kind of calibre of people on board, it can only be good for Swinton Lions.
“They’ve got to play well to improve and to play at a better level, and if they’re playing well, we’ll certainly be playing well and winning games.
“That’s a big, key factor for us.”
One youngster who won’t be a part of Swinton’s promotion bid is young outside-back Luis Roberts.
The 19-year-old centre or winger, who scored 10 tries in 18 appearances for Swinton has opted to stay in the Championship by signing for his boyhood club Leigh Centurions.
Meanwhile, senior players, Martyn Ridyard, Tayler Brown, Geronimo Doyle, Sam Brooks and performance analyst Chris Wharton have also left the club.
Speaking about these departures, Coleman said: “Unfortunately for us we didn’t keep Martyn and players like that,
“They’ve been great for us and I can’t thank them enough.
“It’s about now and what we’ve got, and we’ve certainly got enough experience in there
“I believe you don’t have to be 28, 29 to have experience.”
However, the clubs’ reigning Young Player of the Year, Louis Brogan, has committed to another season in blue and white.
Skipper Rhodri Lloyd, Lewis Hatton, Will Hope, Mike Butt, Deane Meadows, and Billy Brickhill have all signed contract extensions for the 2022 season.
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STAYING: Lions’ 2021 Young Player of the Year Louis Brogan (left) with Head Coach Allan Campbell (right).
Half-back Lewis Else is an exciting addition from Widnes Vikings.
Swinton have also raided fellow relegated side and Greater Manchester rival Oldham.
The Lions have brought in four players from the Roughyeds: centre or second-row Max Roberts from Oldham, 25-year-old hooker Matty Wilkinson, full-back or winger Dan Abram and Swintonian prop or second row, Jack Spencer.
Commenting on the new and returning players, Coleman said:
“They’ve all had the same conversation as such.
“Where do you see Swinton Lions?
“What do you think of Swinton Lions?
“They all said [Swinton is] a Championship club; a big club.
“That’s really important to me, what these players see.”
“They want to play for Swinton and want to get them back to where they belong”
Coleman has also bolstered his backroom team as well as his playing squad, by adding Connor Farrell, Daniel Bamber and Tom Wood in their respective roles.
The Lions’ Head Coach also discussed his squad’s ambitions for the upcoming 2022 season.
You can hear what his aims are below.