JAMES Graham has ended months of speculation over his future by announcing he is to join Canterbury Bulldogs.
Prop forward Graham, who won the 2008 Man of Steel and has been St Helens’ joint skipper this season, will join the NRL outfit at the end of the season.
Graham has enjoyed nine seasons in Super League, but reports had been circulating for some time that he would be moving overseas at the end of the current campaign.
Graham told his future club’s website: “The decision to leave St Helens has been by far the biggest decision of my rugby league career.
“I’ve been on the books with Saints since I was 11 years old and I grew up supporting the club. I love the place and I never wanted to play against them, and as such I didn’t consider any other Super League options.
“Testing myself in the NRL is something I’ve always wanted to do, and the Bulldogs just seemed right from day one. From meeting with (chief executive) Todd Greenberg and (coach) Kevin Moore and also (recruitment manager) Peter Mulholland, I got a feeling that the Bulldogs are a club heading in the right direction.
“They made it clear to me that they saw me as a big part of the future of the club and I’m looking forward, after a successful finish to my time at Saints, to linking with the club at the end of the year.”
Bulldogs coach Kevin Moore, whose side sit sixth in the NRL standings so far with five wins from seven matches, was delighted to have strengthened the squad for next season with the capture of Graham.
“James is a player of the highest quality and we’re very much looking forward to having him on board from next season onwards,” Moore said.
“He has been rated among the best front-rowers in the world for a number of years now and it’s always exciting to add international quality to your forward pack.
“Being the current captain of England his leadership qualities are obvious and he will be a great addition to our club and our team.
“I think he’s going to make a big impression across the NRL.”