FORMER Super League player Jason Walton has been captured by Dewsbury Rams on a one-year contract.
The 29-year-old has been out of the game for the past year due to a serious injury, but brings the experience of 41 top-flight appearances since making his debut for Salford Red Devils in 2009.
Walton played over 100 times for Batley Bulldogs in the Championship over four seasons before earning a move back to Salford, and went on to also feature for London Broncos and Featherstone Rovers.
However, he has played just nine times in the past two years due to injuries. After recovering from one long-term issue which had kept him out of action for most of 2018, he suffered a dislocated knee in the final weeks of the campaign.
With a recovery time of up to a year, he was left without a club last season and has now joined Dewsbury aiming to get his career back on track.
Rams head coach Lee Greenwood, who played with Walton at Batley, says that he had been in contact with the centre for some time about linking up with the club, and is looking forward to seeing him get back to his best.
“I’d enquired about Jason a while ago as I knew he wasn’t contracted anywhere this year,” said Greenwood. “It became clear that he was going to be miss the full season so we were talking to him to see if he’d be interested in coming to us for next year.
“He ticks a lot of boxes. He lives locally, he wants to get back and fit after a year out and a couple of bad injuries, and he likes what I’ve been saying and our plans. If Jason can get back to being fit, playing well and enjoying it then we’ve got a very good player on our hands.
“He can do a bit of everything, he can do the tough stuff but he can also bring some magic and create stuff. I’m looking forward to working alongside him.”
Greenwood admits that Walton may need further time to get into the right shape for full training following his lengthy lay-off, but is certain he will be ready come the start of the new season.
He said: “If there is any doubt that he is 100 per cent fit then we’ll take our time with him.
“It’s more difficult when you’re not at a club because you’re not receiving the physio treatments and being monitored two times a week. He’s just been doing what he thinks is right.
“He’ll see our physios when we get back and if he needs a couple of extra weeks working with them before he starts full training then that’s fine by me. There’s no rush because the bigger picture is the start of the season.”