LIAM FINN hopes that his experience will help Dewsbury Rams after his return to the club was announced this week.
The half-back has departed Newcastle Thunder and signed for the Rams, with whom he enjoyed a four-year spell almost a decade ago.
After leaving for a second spell at Featherstone Rovers he made his Super League break with Castleford Tigers and then Wakefield Trinity, where he now has a coaching role.
He signed for Newcastle Thunder for 2019, but was forced into a rethink after the departure of coach Jason Payne after only two games of the new campaign.
Finn will be with the Rams until the end of the 2020 season.
His links with Dewsbury’s coaching brothers Lee and Gareth Greenwood helped him decide on a return.
“There was obviously a lot of travelling involved. The circumstances changed up there,” he said.
“I signed to play for Payney and he got two games’ grace, and after that when Payney left I had to give it some serious thought.
“I was just deciding what to do after speaking to my family. I was speaking to other people that I’m friends with, and one of them happens to be Lee’s brother.
“I came down here and when that happened they got in touch and said ‘do you want to come and play for us?’
“I’ve obviously been there before and I really enjoyed my time at Dewsbury. I don’t live far away so I thought that was a good opportunity.”
In 2009 he was part of the ‘Invincibles’ side that won every game in the third tier, and he says that was the highlight of his previous spell with the Rams.
“Most of the time I enjoyed it. It wasn’t the easiest time in my career playing-wise,” he said.
“The first year was pretty tough, we had a really experienced team and I was really young. There were some really good blokes in there and some who were difficult to be around, but it was a good learning curve.
“And then (we had) a couple of years in the Championship and then the last year we won League One and we went unbeaten that season. That’s a good memory.
“I had four years (afterwards) at Featherstone and I never thought I’d play in Super League, but I was fortunate to get that chance and hopefully I proved myself at that level for four or five seasons. That’s an achievement I’m really proud of.”
Asked how much longer he’ll be playing for, the 35-year-old said: “I’ve got no idea!
“I’ll just try to get used to the lads at Dewsbury and how they want to play, and hopefully have a positive input and help the team improve. That’s my only thought at this moment in time.”
His experience will be important in leading Dewsbury’s young side, and from watching last week’s close defeat to Toronto, Finn sees plenty of potential.
“I watched the game on TV on Sunday and they looked exactly how I thought. They’ve got a tough team, it looks like they’re working hard for each other and there are some good lads in there who are digging in when it gets tough,” he said.
“They’re obviously a pretty new group after being put together a bit hastily, so they look like everything I expect them to look like at the moment.
“Hopefully we can keep improving in the league and start picking off a few wins, turning the competing side of it into a few more wins.”
Rams chairman Mark Sawyer said: “We are delighted to have Liam Finn back at the club, and we would like to place on record our thanks to Newcastle Thunder and especially their chairman Mick Hogan for his dealing in the transfer.”