North Wales Crusaders have added Alex Eckley to their squad ahead of the 2021 campaign.

Eckley, who came through the academy system at Super League club St Helens and has represented England at university level, had a previous spell with Crusaders in 2019, making nine appearances in total as he started to put his marker down towards the end of the campaign.

The 21-year-old opted for a move back to St Helens, though, to play in the reserves side at the Totally Wicked Stadium.

With reserves not running in 2021, Crusaders head coach Anthony Murray was quick to snap up Eckley ahead of 2021.

On his return to North Wales, Eckley said: “I’m really happy to be back as it was tough to leave in the first place.

“As soon as I heard the reserves division wouldn’t be going ahead next season, the first club I had in mind was Crusaders and we got the deal done as soon as I spoke to Muzza.

“I’ve played with quite a few of the new lads at the club before so I know them well.

“I watched the Challenge Cup game against Rochdale Mayfield on BBC and I thought we looked really good.

“When I left, so did a lot of the more senior players who had brilliant careers, but it’s great to see a lot of young players coming through.

“Hopefully, I can secure a regular place in the team and help the club in their aim to make those play-off spots.”

Crusaders boss Anthony Murray added: “We’re really pleased to have Alex back with us.

“He’s come through a great system at St Helens and you could see him develop with the more games he played for us back in 2019.

“He’s only 21, has a bright future ahead of him and will provide us with more options next season.”