Hull FC: Jason Crookes added to young, exciting backs
PETER Gentle says Hull FC are building an exciting young back division to take the club forward after signing Bradford Bulls winger Jason Crookes.
The 22-year-old was today unveiled by the club as their fifth new recruit for 2013 after agreeing a three-year deal at the KC.
With the Mail reporting Hull's interest five months ago, Gentle admits he has tracked the flying winger's progress all year and is delighted to have finally got his man.
"Jason is exactly the type of player we want and he's someone I've had my eye on for a long time," he told the Mail.
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"He ran down Tom Briscoe in a pre-season game and caught my eye then. We identified we need more speed on the edges and with Jason, Tom Briscoe and Tom Lineham we've now got three flyers and they are all under the age of 22.
"Add Joe Arundel and Ben Crooks to those and we have a really exciting, young, English back line signed for the next few years.
Asked what Crookes will bring to Hull, Gentle added: "He can play left or right and can play wing or centre. He's a handful carrying the ball out of dummy-half and he isn't afraid to work hard for the team. We feel he can get even better with us too."
Crookes made his Super League debut against FC in 2009 and has made 28 appearances since.
After loan spells at Widnes and Sheffield, he enjoyed a breakthrough year in 2011, but struggled to build on it this season as a shoulder injury saw him miss four months.
However, he still finished the campaign with seven tries from his 13 games, including a hat-trick against Hull KR at Craven Park.
The arrival of the Huddersfield-born back will add competition for places next season and Crookes is excited to join the Black and Whites
He said: "The club has brought in some fantastic players for next year and they are really building something special.
"It will be hard to get a position in the side, but it's a challenge I'm looking forward to."