The Toronto Wolfpack have announced the re-signing of Canadian Quinn Ngawati, with Gary Wheeler having left the club by mutual consent.
Ngawati, was the first Canadian player to ever play for the club, having been named in the inaugural Wolfpack squad.
He will begin playing with League One side Rochdale Hornets on dual-registration while working out and training with the Wolfpack full-time.
An extremely popular member of the squad, Ngawati’s relentless commitment, and positive attitude saw him make his professional debut against Gloucester at Lamport Stadium on July 8, 2017. Toronto would win that game 62-10, with Ngawati coming off the bench and holding his position in the team for the following round.
In March 2018, Ngawati was sent on loan to London Skolars following a strong pre-season. He would play in nine games for the Skolars and score his maiden professional try before being recalled to Toronto to play in the Championship against Featherstone Rovers.
Ngawati is also no stranger to the international stage, representing Canada against the United States on September 16, 2017. Assuming the kicking duties, Ngawati scored six points in his national team debut.
The new signing will not impact the salary cap of the Canadian side, due to the discretion allowed from the RFL to sign two Canadians under the age of 21.
Toronto Wolfpack Head Coach, Brian McDermott, spoke of the Club’s excitement at the return of Ngawati:
“Everyone at the Club talks positively about Quinn and the impact he had on the early days of the Wolfpack. He has done all the right things in the intervening years and we are delighted to welcome him back into the fold.”
In regards to Gary Wheeler, he is believed to be heading back to St Helens after leaving the club in 2014.
Having joined Toronto in 2017, he has made 29 appearances in just over three seasons after being hampered by injuries.
With the Wolfpack struggling with salary cap space, and the capture of Ngawati, Wheeler, who can play centre or stand-off, has been allowed to leave.
He only signed a new deal with the Wolfpack at the end of last year, penning a two year deal with the club, and was also an initial squad member of the Wolfpack squad.
Wheeler played for Saints in the thier 2011 Grand Final defeat and made 58 league appearances for the club before heading to Warrington Wolves in 2015.
After just 12 appearances in two years, the headed to the Canadian side in League One.
With both James Bentley and Mark Percival set for long periods on the sideline, Wheeler with provide Kristian Woolf with much-needed depth at centre, and also frees up salary cap space for the Wolfpack.