The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs have announced that six new players will be joining the club in 2017 and beyond.
Five of the six new faces will join the NRL squad on a full-time basis, while young outside back Tom Carr will train with the NRL squad over the summer.
Townsville Blackhawk back-rower Rhyse Martin has signed a two-year deal with the Canterbury Bulldogs and will make his way to Sydney for pre-season in November. Before joining the Blackhawks, the Proserpine junior had spent time with the Sydney Roosters as their under 20 captain.
During his time with the Blackhawks, Martin’s form has seen him play representative football for the PNG Kumuls and also be awarded Intrust Super Cup Second Rower of the Year honours for season 2016.
Known for his consistency, the young back rower will be hoping to take his game to the next level in 2017.
Logan Brothers junior and Raiders outside back Brenko Lee will join the Bulldogs in 2017 on a two-year deal.
Having spent the past six years within the Raiders set-up, Lee will make the move to Belmore after playing 12 NRL games in three seasons. Lee made his NRL debut against the Bulldogs in round 15, 2014 and during his 12 games, Lee has managed to score 11 tries, including four in one game against the Parramatta Eels in round 24 of the 2016 season.
The talented outside backs’ desire to cement a first-grade spot in the centres influenced his decision to sign a two-year deal with the club. The addition of the 21-year old will strengthen the clubs outside backs stocks with the departure of Sam Perrett and Curtis Rona.
Queanbeyan Blues local Junior Zac Woolford will join the Bulldogs through until 2018 on a two-year deal.
Woolford, a hooker makes his way to Belmore following an outstanding season with the Canberra Raiders in 2016 that saw him cause plenty of havoc out of dummy-half for the NSW Blues under 20’s in their 36-22 win over the Maroons. With a strong finish to the year, Woolford was nominated for the Dally M Holden Cup player of the year. A handy goal kicker as well, he finished the 2016 season with 144 points, four tries, 64 conversions, 69% with the boot and 23 line break assists.
The Bulldogs welcome Josh Cleeland to the club on a two-year deal following one season with 2016 NRL Premiers the Cronulla Sharks.
Cleeland joined the Sharks in 2016 after playing an integral role in the premiership winning success of the Ipswich Jets in the 2015 Queensland Cup. Following an impressive Auckland Nines in 2016 and a great season for the Newtown Jets, the Westend Bulldogs will add plenty of depth to the Bulldogs halves in 2017.
Outside back Tom Carr joins the Bulldogs from the St George Illawarra Dragons on a two-year deal.
The Helensburgh Tigers junior was elevated to the Dragons NRL squad in 2016 after an impressive 2015 season in the club’s NYC side which saw him score 17 tries in 12 games. An outstanding finisher, who will train with the NRL squad over the summer and will be looking to make the most of his opportunity.
Tualau joins the Bulldogs on a three-year deal from 2016 Grand Finalist’s the Melbourne Storm.
A strong running forward with excellent ball skills is a graduate of the Storm under 20’s system, following two seasons in their NYC side. The prop forward arrives at Belmore following two seasons for Easts Tigers in the Intrust Super Cup.
The addition of these six new faces along with a crop of promising young players stepping up over the summer, adds to the stability of the current roster which features Origin, test and plenty of NRL experience.
Adding the likes of Brenko Lee, Zac Woolford and Rhyse Martin to the 2017 squad and beyond follows on from Moses Mbye, David Klemmer and Josh Jackson all committing to the club for a further four years.
“Stability and experience is always important in a roster and we have recruited to bring some youth, like Brenko Lee and Zac Woolford whose early potential will flourish in the Bulldogs environment,” Chief Executive Raelene Castle added.