Freeman & McAvoy sign for 2023
Whitehaven Rugby League can today confirm the capture of Sam Freeman and re-signing of Liam McAvoy on one year deals.
23 year old Freeman is a former Widnes Viking and Rochdale Hornets player who is equally at home on Full back or wing as well as an accomplished goal kicker. Freeman burst onto the scene with the Vikings back in 2019 scoring four tries on his home debut vs York City Knights back in April 2019.
Having joined Rochdale ahead of the curtailed 2020 season he continued with the Hornets for 2021 before suffering a serious knee injury which seen him miss the entirety of 2022 season. Despite being on the sidelines the club kept in touch with Sam which seen him attend several matches of Haven’s last season and has now signed on the dotted line ahead of the 2023 season.
Head coach Jonty Gorley admitted he has his on eye on Freeman for last season saying ”Sam Freeman is a player we looked at last year but he had a season ending ACL injury at back end of 2021, we've kept in touch with each other since. He's been up to visit a couple of times at training and games. When he came available we jumped at the chance to sign him. He comes with great wraps from people in the know and looked great on his clips. Sam came through Widnes youth system to first team and went to Rochdale, where he done his ACL.
Sam can cover a number of positions wing, centre, half, 9 but his best position is probably at full back, he is also a goal kicker. I can't wait to see how he goes with us.”
Director Ashley Kilpatrick spoke about Freeman saying “ Sam’s a good young kid who has come through the Widnes system. He travelled up to home games and training of his own back to get a look and feel for the club as well as meeting Jonty so his commitment started last season with us. He had been training with Salford Reserves and for him not picking up a hamstring injury he would have been with us at the back of last season. Sam’s a utility player comfortable in a number of positions. It’s real great to have him on board.”
Liam McAvoy joined the club ahead of the 2022 season after previously spending 7 seasons at Workington & Newcastle Thunder. The prop forward made 21 appearances in Chocolate, Blue and Gold starting 18 of them scoring 1 try in the Round 22 Championship defeat away to Sheffield Eagles.
Head coach Jonty Gorley was happy to get the forward to remain at the LEL Arena saying “I've known Liam a long time and have always liked the way he plays the game. He's a valued and respected member of the squad. This comes from his experience in the championship and the for type of player he is. He is a leader, he does a great job as a middle, tough carries and plenty of effort in defence. He is also probably the fittest forward and one of the fittest in the squad, it's good to have him for another year.”
Once again the club extends its thanks to the Vice Presidents supporters group who have helped the club in the retention of Liam McAvoy.