North Wales Crusaders have signed halfback Joe Sanderson on a season-long loan from Championship club Batley Bulldogs.

Sanderson, who came through the academy system at Super League outfit Leeds Rhinos, has plenty of experience at League 1 level with Hunslet, recording more than 500 points while at the South Leeds Stadium.

After his plans to feature for New South Wales side Albury Thunder over in Australia last season were scuppered because of the COVID-19 pandemic, he joined Batley in the second tier for 2021.

With the Bulldogs making a strong start to the new campaign and plenty of competition for places at Mount Pleasant, Crusaders have moved quickly to bring Sanderson in on loan.

“Batley have been going really well and it’s been tough to get in,” Sanderson said.

“I’m looking forward to getting some game time and I’m really grateful to North Wales for the opportunity. I’m aiming to grab it with both hands.

“Crusaders are a really good side and I’m hoping to add something, push for a spot in the team and help them get some wins.

“One of my strengths is controlling games and I can hopefully do my bit on the back of all the work the forwards do.

“I’ve heard the club have moved stadiums and it looks a fantastic facility and surface to play on.

“It’s been a bit of a waiting game for me since the start of the season so I’m keen to meet the lads, get going and hopefully put in some good performances.”

North Wales head coach Anthony Murray added: “He’s been fighting for a spot at a Championship club and has plenty of experience in League 1 so it’s a really positive deal for us.

“We’ve got some good, young halfbacks at the club already, but Joe will add a bit more experience and add further competition for places.”

While the loan is for the 2021 season, Batley do have the option to recall him.

NWC Rugby League

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