Doncaster RLFC have announced the signing of former Great Britain player Jamie Thackray on a one-year deal via the clubs website.
The experienced forward – who made a couple of loan appearances for the club in 2008 – was alongside former coach Paul Cooke in the Hull FC Challenge Cup-winning side of 2005 and is delighted to be back in South Yorkshire after two years at London Broncos.
“I’m excited now. I was probably going to retire because I thought I was staying at London but that’s not worked out so I spat my dummy out a little bit and thought, you know what, I’m going to retire, I’ve had enough but I’m excited by the challenge now and I’m looking forward to it,” he said.
“I know Carl (Hall – CEO) from way back as a player. I remember being at Leeds and coming on loan for a couple of games and I enjoyed it then and Carl sold it to me, he’s signed some good players for next year. The club didn’t do too badly last year. It’ll be good to play alongside Feka Paleaasina, and there’s a genuine chance of pushing for the top two.
“I’ve been down in London full-time for two years and have looked after myself quite well so I’m pretty sure when you see me play then you wont believe the age I am! I feel in great shape still and I’m raring to go – I’m back in the gym already training and in the meantime I’ve been trying to become a personal trainer and kept quite fit.”
Thackray sent a warning to the rest of the division as the club look to return to the Championship in the forthcoming season, saying he has not come to rest on his reputation.
“We’re going to have a big pack. I’m hoping Feka can lay the foundations and I can go straight through – that’s how I normally play. Russ Spiers is a good player; Richie Barnett is bigger than most of the props too so we’re looking quite good,” he continued.
“There are some quality facilities, probably some that are the best in the game and there’s great people which is what I like. If you’ve got good people then I want to help and it’s good for everyone else: if you enjoy it then you play better – I’m looking forward to ripping it up.
“I know Toronto have signed everyone but that doesn’t mean they’re going to win the league easily. I’m not coming to make the numbers up, I’m going to give my all every game and try as hard as I can to get us up that ladder!”