AUSSIE recruit Sam Stone has rocked up in Leigh raring to go and determined to maximise his new career opportunity in Super League.

Stone, who celebrated his 24th birthday earlier this month, is set to make his Centurions’ debut in Sunday’s home game against Salford (kick-off 4.30pm).

While his compatriots refused to participate in the end of season World Cup, the former Gold Coast Titan front rower has no concerns about touching down in the UK.

“I haven’t been too scared about the whole Covid situation,” he told Journal Sport. “Lots of people here have been vaccinated and I thought it was a good opportunity to come over.

“It’s definitely something I wanted to do before my career was done, to live a different lifestyle, see a different part of the world and of course to experience a different style of footie.

“Everyone, I have spoken to, including my old man, says Super League is more open and less structured than the NRL. So, that will suit me,” added the son of former Huddersfield Giants head coach, Rick Stone.

Stone arrived last weekend and compatriot Jai Whitbread is expected to join him shortly.

He wants to get stuck in immediately as Centurions bid to end a run of 16 successive league defeats, including last Friday’s 46-10 loss to Leeds Rhinos.

“I have told Kurt (Haggerty) I am happy to jump straight in. I will leave that decision upto him to decide what is best for the team but I am definitely ready to go.”

Stone hasn’t played since starting for Titans in a 56-24 defeat to Manly Sea Eagles on June 20.

“I was still training full-time with the Titans,” he explained. “I was also 18th man a couple of times so I was there or thereabouts, ready for a game.

“So, I can’t wait to pull on the jersey and do the fans proud.”

Stone is a former team mate of Leigh full-back Brendan Elliot and spent a brief spell with Alex Gerrard during the latter’s time at Mackay Cutters and his pre-season with the Titans.

“My old man also coached Junior Sa’u back in the day. Junior was at the Knights when I was a young kid but I probably haven’t seen him since I was 13 years old.”

Stone junior is contracted until the end of 2022 and isn’t fazed by Leigh’s flimsy hold on its Super League status.

“I haven’t thought about it too much,” he insisted. “My focus has been to get over here, play some good football for Leigh and try to win a few games. I’ll deal with the other situation if it arises.”

Skipper Liam Hood won’t be a Leyther next year. The popular Scottish international hooker has signed a two-year deal with Wakefield Trinity, starting next season.

“I’m buzzing. I live in Wakefield now, so it is nice to be closer to home.

“I am probably playing the best rugby of my career. I am 30 in January, so I believe I am coming into my prime.”

Forwards Rob Butler and Jack Ashworth are available for selection this weekend after each served two-match bans for their part in a brawl during Leigh’s 50-6 defeat to Wigan.