Written by Oliver Kellner-Dunk
Defending Super League champions St Helens made waves in the transfer market overnight when they announced the signing of Manly Warringah Sea Eagles second-rower Curtis Sironen on a two-year deal that will commence in 2022.
This is a good bit of business by the champions, and is quite fitting too, as their current Australian second-rower from Manly Warringah and a former teammate of Sironen’s in Joel Thompson will be leaving the club at season’s end, with St Helens’ incoming signing confirming to Sky Sports that Thompson had a role to play in getting him to the Saints.
“I am very excited about the next chapter in my career and I couldn’t have hoped to have signed with a better club,” Sironen said.
“Every Australian player knows that the Saints set the benchmark in the English Super League. I felt extremely comfortable from the get-go when speaking to [head coach] Kristian Woolf and Mike Rush [chief executive] and I even had an opportunity to chat to [assistant coach] Paul Wellens about the move.
“It was a very easy decision for me because I always wanted to play in England at some stage and I feel now is the right time to be making the move. My ex-Manly teammate Joel Thompson also told me some wonderful things about the club and its supporters.
— St.Helens R.F.C. (@Saints1890) September 2, 2021
“Obviously my focus remains on the Manly Sea Eagles and hopefully I can finish the season on a big note.”
Sironen has unfortunately only played a handful of games in 2021 due to an injury-plagued season, but has come back fit and firing in recent weeks and is ready to take on the finals with his Sea Eagles.
Thus far, the 28-year-old has scored a try, averaged 52 running metres per game and made 63 tackles for an efficiency rate of 94%, an admirable defensive strike rate when you consider he has only played five games so far this year.
We are sure to see Curtis Sironen prove a key member of a St Helens side that could be gunning for a fourth straight Super League title in 2022, a feat that has never been achieved in the Super League era that is surely a tangible end goal for the Saints down the line.