Kian Stewart – son of former Town striker Marcus – has signed for Huddersfield Rugby Union Club.
The 18-year-old full back is part of the Yorkshire Carnegie Academy but has been involved in their first XV build-up to the new season.
Born in Dewsbury while his dad was on the books at Town, Stewart junior played age-grade football for the John Smith’s Stadium club before deciding rugby was the game for him.
Joining on dual registration, he is one of five new additions to the Lockwood Park squad for head coach Gareth Lewis, who takes his team to Lymm this weekend for their final warm-up before the National II North opener against Sedgley Park on September 1.
The other four are Ross Thornton, who is returning to the club from Sheffield Tigers, scrum half Joe Green (Yorkshire Carnegie Academy), hooker Mark Chivers from Morley and centre James Davies, also from Morley.
Lewis explained: “It’s great to add these boys to the squad and it provides us with some much-needed depth.
“It is a long season and, from experience, everybody will play their part.
“They bring a great mix of youth and experience, and it’s great to continue our link with Yorkshire Carnegie – we will do our best to develop these young players”
Lewis added: “I am delighted to welcome back Ross (Thornton), who has gained valuable experience playing hooker in National Two North with Sheffield Tigers.
“He comes back as a better player.”
Stewart, who can play full back or on the wing, is 5ft 9in tall and weighs 75kg (11st 8lb).
He has previously played at Old Rishworthians and is looking forward to the challenge at Lockwood Park.
“I’ve heard some great stuff about the environment and the people at the club,” he said of the move to Huddersfield.
“Looking at what they’ve achieved over the years has really pushed me to join.
“Hopefully I can grab myself a first-team starting spot as a regular and help the squad finish well by the end of the season.”
His clubmate Green is also 18 and at Lockwood Park on dual registration.
The former Woodhouse Grove and Harrogate player said: “Huddersfield have had lots of success in the past and I’ve heard from the outside how good the environment is to be in.
“Obviously, my aims are to get a regular first-team spot and to help push the team to top of table.”
The much-travelled Chivers – list Rotherham, Otley, Cleckheaton, Halifax, Wharfedale, Sheffield Tigers, Harrogate, Orrell and Morley as his former clubs – brings real experience to the pack at 36 years of age.
The 15st unit says fear of missing out was his main motivation for joining Huddersfield, because he should have done so last year!
“I was super proud and in envy of what the lads achieved last year,” explained Chivers.
“This is my swan song (says the Mrs!), so I just want one more season playing at a decent level with some top lads.”
The 25-year-old Davies is targeting being top try-scorer from the centre position.
“This is the best level of union I have played, and it’s always nice to prove a few people wrong,” he smiled.
“I’m hoping we can push for the top four.”
Thornton, 26, brings his 100kg (15st 7lb) frame to the second row, and he explained it’s been a frustrating time getting clearance to play again.
“It’s been a tough couple of months having to sit out pre-season, with being contracted to Sheffield Tigers and notifying them I was moving on.
“I have recently come to a financial agreement with their committee which enables me to get back on the playing field.
“Huddersfield had a fantastic season last time out and I was happy to see them get a top-six finish.
“Having spoken to friends over the summer and seeing the signings they have made, they have shown a real intent in what they are trying to build down at Lockwood Park.
“Further to this, I started my rugby at Lockwood Park with a lot of the guys that have recently returned to the club, and I look forward to playing with them again.”
Thornton added: “I think I am a great addition to the current squad, having learned a lot at Sheffield playing in National 2 with them for the last two years.
“I plan on putting my marker down for the season, hoping to better what was achieved last year by the club.”