KAI O’Donnell reckons Leigh Leopards can bridge the class gap when last season’s all conquering Championship side steps up into Super League next year.

And the Australian born forward has already noticed signs the same successful formula from 2022 is being replicated with a new look playing group.

O’Donnell was one of the unsung heroes of Leigh’s ‘three-peat’ campaign culminating in promotion to the top tier.

“We don’t have a losing mindset; we just go out to win,” said the 23-year-old former Canberra Raider. “That is our DNA as a club at the moment.

“When I first came over I didn’t realise the quality of the coaching staff and the players.

“And I didn’t expect the group to be quite as close as it is; it is probably the closest group I have been a part of in my footie career. Everything has exceeded my expectations.

“The new signings are already fitting in nicely. They are not only quality players but good humans as well.

“We are close already. It has the same sort of feel as last season which is pretty exciting.”

O’Donnell also believes individually he’s improved since moving to England.

“’Lammy’ and Clubby (Tony Clubb) are massive on front foot defence; not sitting back and waiting.

“They have changed my style to bring more collision into defence. Lammy is also massive on his skills and wants everyone to be able to pass so there is a lot more ball playing.

“He wants us to be better footballers all round; not to have a weak link in our armour.”

O’Donnell is one of Leigh’s seven quota players despite being a British passport holder.

And he has no intention of pursuing international claims with England.” I am a pretty passionate Aussie,” he said.

“So, it would be hard for me to do that. I know how much it means to everyone and the pride players have in their jersey over here.

“I would feel out of place given how passionate I am for Australia. I would hate to step in if I didn’t feel the same way as everyone else.”

For now, he’s focussed on training, finding it tougher to adapt to the cold weather rather than the volume or variety of his first English pre season regime.

“It is the first time I have seen snow fall,” he admitted. “I didn’t even know if I would get to training because I wasn’t sure how to drive on snow.

“But I’ve got the hang of it now and I am really enjoying it, even the training!