Castleford Tigers skipper Michael Shenton has signed a three-year contract extension that will keep him at the club until at least the end of the 2019 season.
The 29-year-old England centre had a year left on his current contract and the new deal will see him continue to lead out the Tigers when they move to their new 10,000 capacity state of the art communnity stadium at the £135m Five Towns Park.
Tigers hope to be in the new stadium for the start of the 2018 season.
Shenton joined Castleford as a schoolboy from local amateur club Smawthorne Panthers and made his first-team debut in 2004.
He moved to St Helens in 2011 and rejoined Castleford two years later, signing a four-year deal with a then struggling Tigers team.
His proudest most came last year when he led Tigers out at Wembley in the Challenge Cup final against Leeds Rhinos.
Shenton is excited to be staying with Castleford for the rest of his playing career.
“I’m absolutely delighted. I’m really ambitious and excited to be part of this team,” he said.
“The new season looks special for us moving forward. I’m really excited to stay here and finish my playing career at Castleford Tigers. I’m really enjoying my time here and we play a great style of rugby here that suits my game.
“It was an easy decision for me to extend my contract. I really enjoy my role here as Captain and the brand of rugby we play should be even more exciting in 2016. It’s all about playing my best rugby for Castleford and being a good leader.”
Tigers coach Daryl Powell said Shenton’s contract extension was “great news.”
“Michael has been a massively important player for us in the two and half years I have been at the club, not just in his game and the quality of it you see on the playing field but his leadership off the field and his influence in the group is hugely positive,” said Powell.
“It’s great news when someone who has that higher standing within the club wants to stay on a long term deal.”
Castleford’s chief executive Steve Gill said: “Michael and I go back quite a few years, and have shared some good and not so good moments here at Castleford Tigers.
“I coached Michael at Smawthorne Panthers for a couple of years at the age of 15 to 16 and then brought him to the club as a 17 year old when I had just managed to get on the coaching ladder here myself. I am very proud of what Michael has achieved in the game, and he remains a very well grounded individual,”
“Michael personifies what it means to pull on the Castleford Tigers shirt. His leadership and playing qualities are exceptional, and it’s a real statement from this club to tie him down, at the peak of his playing career for a further 3 years.” at the remain at the club until at least the end of the 2019 season.”