Luke confirms Dragons move

Issac Luke after the Warriors' game against the Eels last year. Photo: Getty Images
Issac Luke. Photo: Getty Images
Former New Zealand Warriors hooker Issac Luke has confirmed his signing to a rival club.

Months of speculation was put to rest after the St George Illawarra Dragons officially announced the signing of Luke to their squad on Tuesday.

Luke has been signed to play a bench role in the squad, backing up starter Cameron McInnes who is expected to float between hooker and the No 13 jersey.

"To have a really established back-up player of his calibre is exciting. Our coaching staff were keen to have him on our roster with plans in mind regarding how they'd like to play him, which have already been discussed with Issac as well as Cameron," Dragons director of pathways and list management Ian Millward said in a statement.

The player himself, meanwhile, announced the move in classic Luke style by simply tweeting "St George Dragons. On Way."

The Dragons then came back with their own retort today: "We can confirm @issacluke_14 is 'on way'. We look forward to teaching him the club's full name when he arrives for pre-season training".

The move is a preferable one for Luke who wanted to stay in the NRL, but cap issues were complicating the situation for several clubs.

There was also interest from some Super League franchises, but Luke's first choice was to stay in the southern hemisphere.

Sydney is also familiar for Luke and his family, after his long stint with the Rabbitohs.

Luke made his NRL debut in 2007 and played 188 games for South Sydney, before his move home in 2016.

He struggled for consistency in his first two seasons at Mt Smart, but enjoyed some vintage displays in 2018 and was one of the best in the squad.

Last season was a mixed bag, as he performed well some weeks but other times was relegated to reserve grade.

After the last Warriors home game of 2019, Luke stated his time playing in Auckland had been a blast.

"I loved my time here, always loved New Zealand," said Luke. "If it ends up I have to find somewhere else, so be it."

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