Callum Hazzard, who spent 2019 on loan at North Wales Crusaders from Super League side St Helens, has returned to the club on a permanent basis ahead of the 2021 campaign.

Despite the 21-year-old’s loan spell at Crusaders being his first real taste of senior rugby league, he consistently impressed for the Wrexham club and was one of the stand-out performers in 2019.

In his 18 appearances for North Wales, Hazzard crossed for five tries and was called back to Saints towards the end of the campaign, making his Super League debut at London Broncos.

But Crusaders boss Anthony Murray has managed to lure the forward back to the club for 2021.

On returning to Wrexham, Hazzard said: “As soon as I got the message from Andy Moulsdale and Muzza, I was really keen and ready to get going again.

“2019 was a huge season for me as I managed to make my Super League debut on the back of playing at Crusaders.

“Without those games at League 1 level, I would never have done that. I showed I was capable of competing against blokes and it mentally prepared me as well.

“I’ve got to earn my place in the squad as there’s obviously experienced blokes there and lads who’ve put down their place in the team. I want to train well, catch the eye and get a place in that squad.

“With a young and firing squad and mix of some older, more experienced guys, I think we’ve got a real good chance of making those play-offs and pushing to knock some teams off the top of that league.

“We’ve got to aim as high as possible, but we at least need to be making those play-off spots.

“League 1’s been really competitive for the last few years and it’s only getting stronger and stronger.”

North Wales head coach Murray added: “We’re delighted to have Callum back with us for the 2021 season.

“He was fantastic for us in 2019 and the fact Saints handed him his Super League debut shows the difference he made while he was at Crusaders.

“Callum’s only 21 and has a very bright future ahead of him so his signing is another step in the right direction for us.

“I’m really looking forward to working with Callum again and I’ve no doubt he’ll be an important player for us in 2021.”