'I jumped at the chance': Richie Myler joins York Knights after shock Leeds Rhinos exit
The former England international was under contract for 2024 but has been given the green light to end his six-year stay at Headingley for a new challenge in the second tier.
Myler has signed a one-year deal and will join Will Dagger and Jimmy Keinhorst among the fresh faces at the LNER Community Stadium next season.
"As soon as I started speaking to Clint (Goodchild, owner) about the opportunity to come to York and how exciting that was going to be, I jumped at the chance," said Myler.
"I can see the vision that they're trying to achieve here and the goal that they want to get to. I could see how I could play a good part in that."
After making a late charge for the play-offs this year, York are aiming to take the next step towards Super League in 2024.
The Knights were ranked 17th in the indicative phase of IMG's new grading system but can boost their performance score with a strong season on the field.
York boss Andrew Henderson views the signing of Myler as a timely coup for the club.
"With Danny Kirmond officially announcing his retirement, I just felt as a coach we probably needed another senior head to balance the squad a little bit more," said Henderson.
"When I heard that Richie was looking for another opportunity and was potentially available, we held those discussions with him and both myself and Clint were impressed with him and his energy and desire to be part of this project, be part of this journey and to help this team progress forward in 2024.
"From watching Richie, I know he's a competitor. He has a will to win and an abundance of experience. I think it's a really good signing for us as a club."
Myler scored 52 tries in 134 games for the Rhinos after joining from Catalans Dragons in 2018.
The 33-year-old, who began his career with hometown club Widnes Vikings before spells with Salford Red Devils and Warrington Wolves, won the Lance Todd Trophy for his performance in Leeds' 2020 Challenge Cup final triumph.
Myler scored six tries and provided 17 assists in 19 appearances in Super League this year but has decided to leave Headingley following the signing of Australian full-back Lachie Miller.
“It has been an honour and privilege to wear the blue and amber shirt for the last six years and to be leaving as a Challenge Cup and Lance Todd winner, which was the proudest moment of my career," said Myler.
“To all Leeds Rhinos fans for the support and love you have shown me through my time at the club, I cannot fully put into words my gratitude.
"In the times I’ve needed you, you’ve always delivered. Playing for you has been my pleasure and I hope I have repaid that support in always giving you 100 per cent.
“The time has felt right for me and my family to have a new challenge and I am delighted to be joining up with York Knights and to be part of their exciting future."
Myler's departure leaves Leeds light in the full-back position after Luke Hooley was allowed to join Castleford Tigers but Rohan Smith did not want to stand in the veteran's way.
“On behalf of everyone at the Rhinos, I would like to thank Richie for his contribution to the club during his six years with us," said the Leeds boss.
"I fully understand his decision to look for a new challenge with York and he leaves with our best wishes."