Halifax Panthers are pleased to announce the signing of Brandon Pickersgill on a deal until the end of the 2024 Betfred Championship season.
The 25 year old former Bradford Bulls star joins the Panthers from Championship rivals Featherstone Rovers after securing a release from Post Office Road, and Fax have moved quickly to secure the signature of the former Stanningley and East Leeds junior.
“I’m buzzing to have signed at Halifax”, said Pickersgill. “It’s a fresh start for me having come over from Featherstone. I wasn’t getting much game time there and there was an opportunity at Fax and I’m buzzing to take it. It’s a good set up here, really good facilities and very professional so I’m looking forward to getting stuck into training and meeting all the boys.”
“I’m really looking forward to playing down at The Shay as I’ve always enjoyed playing against Halifax. The fans always bring a lot of noise and loads of energy so I can’t wait to be amongst it and have them on my side this time.”
Primarily a full back but also having the ability to play stand off, Pickersgill offers Panthers head coach Simon Grix some much needed versatility across the back line.
“Brandon has been one of the strongest full backs in recent years in the Championship”, said Grix. “He was solid at Bradford and put on some really good shows at Featherstone as well. He finds himself in a spot there where he’s got 2 or 3 in front of him in the pecking order which doesn’t suit him.”
“He fits with us, he’s an out and out full back but he has got the ability to jump in a couple of other areas as well. But that puts Woody on his toes and also gives us the opportunity to potentially play Woody at half back as well and get Brandon in at full back when we can. Because obviously, we got 25 or 26 games out of all three last year, Woody Keyesy and Louis, it’d be wishful thinking to try and stretch them out again this season. So it just gives us that bit of an option as well.”
“It’s not a closed book at that full back spot. It gives Woody some competition and a reason to be on his toes. He’s been great so far this year so hopefully he maintains that form but having Pickers come in is really handy for us. It’s not a secret we are thin in terms of squad depth, we still need to be looking and seeing what’s available. Brandon fits the bill for us, he’s quality and gives us that depth so I’m really happy to have him on board.”
Halifax Panthers Director of Rugby Richard Durgan added: “We’ve been looking to add some quality in the back line for a while. It’s no real surprise after Cory Aston left the club, we’ve needed reinforcement in some areas so when Brandon is around, you’re always going to be looking. So we’re really pleased to get that extra quality added in and it’ll make the full back and halves a really competitive area of our squad so we look forward to the fight.”