Australian Tonga joins Chase at ambitious Centurions

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LEIGH CENTURIONS’ impressive squad-building continued apace last night as the ambitious Championship club added the name of former Australia centre Willie Tonga to their already impressive roster.

Tonga, who scored eight tries in a dozen games for the Kangaroos, arrives after a season with Catalans Dragons in Super League.

The former Queensland State of Origin star, 32, is the latest big-name recruit for a club that finished top of the Championship last season but then missed out on promotion after failing miserably in the Super 8s.

Ex-England stand-off Rangi Chase, Samoa captain Harrison Hansen and former Hull KR second-row Corey Paterson have all joined from Salford Red Devils in readiness for 2016 along with another international player Reni Maitua.

With former England second-row and Kiwi prop Fuifui Moimoi also in their ranks there seems no limit to the spending of owner Derek Beaumont.

Meanwhile, Kieran Dixon, the young Hull KR player who endured such a horrid 80 minutes at full-back in the 50-0 Challenge Cup final defeat against Leeds Rhinos, looks set to challenge for a wing spot in 2016.

He was given the No 2 jersey by Rovers’ head coach Chris Chester who has handed Australian Ken Sio, a prolific force out wide last term, the full-back jersey.

Former Castleford Tigers winger Ben Blackmore has left Featherstone Rovers to join Championship rivals Sheffield Eagles on a full-time deal.

Blackmore, 22, made his Super League debut for hometown Castleford in 2012 before moving to Huddersfield Giants for a couple of seasons and playing a handful of games there.