Leigh Leopards Sign Aaron Pene from Melbourne Storm: Rugby League News Update

Leigh Leopards Sign Aaron Pene from Melbourne Storm

On June 12th, 2024, the Leigh Leopards have officially confirmed the signing of Aaron Pene from the Melbourne Storm. Pene, who was granted an immediate release by the Storm on May 24th, will now join the Leopards on an initial contract that will run until the end of the 2026 season.

Pene, a prop forward, initially joined Melbourne midway through the 2019 season and made his debut against St George Illawarra the following year. After spending the 2022 season with the New Zealand Warriors, he returned to the Storm on a two-year deal at the start of 2023. In total, Pene has played 32 games in the NRL over the past five years.

The Leopards’ acquisition of Pene was facilitated by the departure of Ben Nakubuwai, who joined Featherstone Rovers on loan for the remainder of the 2024 season. This freed up a quota spot, allowing the Leopards to bring in the experienced forward.

Speaking on Sky Sports’ the Verdict, pundit Jenna Brooks confirmed the deal, stating that Pene will be available to make his Leopards debut this weekend when they travel to Perpignan to face the Catalans Dragons. The Leigh faithful will be hoping that Pene can provide an immediate boost to the team’s playoff aspirations, as they look to recover from a slow start to the season.

In a club statement, Leigh’s Head of Rugby, Chris Chester, expressed his belief that Pene is a “brilliant signing” and someone the club has been tracking for the past 12 months. Meanwhile, Head Coach Adrian Lam shared his excitement at the prospect of working with the powerful and explosive player, describing Pene as a “real Adrian Lam style of Rugby League player.”

The announcement of Pene’s signing was teased by the Leigh Leopards throughout the morning on social media, with a series of cryptic posts hinting at the imminent news. This strategic approach built anticipation among the club’s supporters, who will now eagerly await the impact of their new signing as they push for a playoff berth in the Super League.

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