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Luke Gale: Signing new Bradford Bulls deal feels just brilliant
Luke Gale has spoken of his delight after signing a new, improved three-deal with the Bulls which will keep him at Odsal until the end of 2015.
The scrum half, currently training with the England Knights squad ahead of their matches against Ireland and Scotland, joined the Bulls on a two-year deal last winter.
The former Harlequins man, 24, enjoyed a highly impressive debut campaign and his performances attracted admiring glances from a clutch of rival clubs.
The Bulls’ financial meltdown raised the prospect of them being forced out of Super League, and Gale admits he would not have been short of offers had that grim fate materialised.
But, after the club’s future was safeguarded following Omar Khan’s intervention, Gale was thrilled to pen a new long-term deal and believes a bright new era beckons under Francis Cummins.
Gale said: “It’s brilliant to put pen to paper and sign a long-term deal.
“I spoke to Franny and he seems really positive about next year.
“His ideas sound brilliant and I’m really looking forward to getting on board with him.
“Yes, I did have a few offers and I sat down with my agent and with Franny.
“But Franny wanted me at Bradford and I wanted to stay, so he showed faith in me and I showed faith in him.
“I’m looking forward to building on that partnership with him.
“I’ve known Franny since our time together at Leeds and he’s always been smart with his coaching.
As head coach I think he’ll be able to show his qualities next year.
“Hopefully he gets the squad sorted and we can crack on and have a good year. I’m looking forward to it already.”
Cummins first coached Gale in the youth ranks at Leeds and is a confirmed admirer of the former Middleton Marauders amateur.
The Bulls boss said: “There were some supporting artists during 2012 but Galey was very much the heartbeat of the team.
“Along with the young lads, he will form the backbone of the team we’ve got going forward.
“I coached him when I was injured at Leeds. After I did my knee in 2004, I was coming back in 2005 and doing rehab, and I helped to coach the Under-18s where Galey and Kyle Briggs were the halves.
“Galey reads the game really well now and he’s not scared of taking the line on.
“At the time I thought he was just going to miss out at Leeds but he took the plunge and went to Doncaster, did really well there and then got picked up by Harlequins.
“He’s come to us and is now in the England Knights squad, which is great credit to him. I’m delighted to have signed him for the next three years.”
Gale, meanwhile, will join the Bulls squad for pre-season later than the rest of his team-mates due to his involvement with the England Knights in the Alitalia Cup.
The competition will see Kieron Purtill’s men travel to take on Ireland in Belfast on Saturday, October 20 before facing Scotland in Edinburgh on Sunday, October 28.