Jonny Pownall Returns To Leigh Centurions

Leigh Centurions are delighted to confirm the return of Jonny Pownall to the Club following two years away.

Pownall, 27, scored 60 tries in 92 Leigh games between 2011 and 2016 and joins up again with former Centurions team-mate John Duffy as part of his team re-building plans.

“It’s a strange feeling, all a bit surreal,” says Pownall of his first impressions on being back at his hometown club. “Playing in front of the Leigh fans again will be brilliant. They are so passionate about the club and the game.

“As long as I’m enjoying my rugby, which I’m sure I will under Duffs, my form will benefit on the back of it.”

Pownall left Leigh to join the Toronto Wolfpack and played a major part in their Championship One success that capped their inaugural season. But after scoring 30 tries in 32 games for Toronto he fell out of favour early last season and spent the rest of the 2018 campaign on loan at both Barrow Raiders and Bradford Bulls.

“I’ve no regrets about joining Toronto,” he says. “The first year was brilliant. It was a very good experience. It was a new experience for everyone and we all bought into it. The people over there are very passionate and they love sport in general. I really hope it takes off.

“Last year I had to leave Toronto to get some game time, but especially with being out on loan I struggled for consistency and that’s why I’m excited to be back at Leigh.

“I played alongside Duffs back in the day and I’ve heard a lot of good things about him as a coach. I’ve only had a few sessions but I’m enjoying training again and there’s a real buzz about the place. I can’t wait for the season to start.”

Pownall is a former Leigh Miners Rangers Junior who earned heritage number #1346 after making his debut as teenager against Hull Dockers in the Challenge Cup.

Since then he’s scored 93 tries in career 134 games and reaching his century will be one of his targets in 2019.

Leigh Centurions head coach John Duffy said: “It’s great to have another Leigh lad back with Jonny joining us.

“Jonny has that knack of winning one-on-one contests and if he gets a try-scoring opportunity I’d back him all day.

“Like a lot of lads who left, he didn’t feel like he finished on his terms and now he’s back he can’t wait to get started. In his early training sessions he’s been good, real good and you can see his enthusiasm and enjoyment coming back.

“He’s a nice lad with loads of talent and can play wing or fullback for us with equal effectiveness. The squad is going to have a strong core of talented local lads who want to play for the Club and Jonny fits that criteria perfectly.”

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