PAUL JACKSON believes he is leaving a Huddersfield Giants club that has never been in better shape.
The 31-year-old prop moves on to Castleford Tigers for the start of 2010 after spending the past three seasons at the Galpharm.
It was his second spell at Huddersfield, having also played for the Giants in 1998 when they had their first taste of Super League life.
And Jackson admits it’s far tougher to be leaving now than it was a decade ago.
"I can’t believe how much this club has progressed over the past 10 years," said Jackson, who began his career in the Giants Academy and is about to embark on his second spell at Castleford having also played at Wakefield.
"It’s improved at every level, and I feel proud to have played a very, very small part in the way the Giants have developed.
"When I was here the first time, we were just happy to win the odd game here and there.
"But now we feel bitterly disappointed we didn’t win the Challenge Cup and that we couldn’t progress in the play-offs after finishing third in Super League!
"I am a bit gutted I won’t be around to see the club build on that next year, because I’m sure that with Nathan (Brown) in charge they will.
"But, unfortunately, the salary-cap restrictions mean I have to move on, and I’m looking forward to playing at Cas next year.
"I’ve still got some very close friends at Cas from my first time there and I’m sure I can give them two very good years.
"It’ll be a great challenge and I’m already excited about the game against the Giants, even though I know how tough they’ll be!"
Would existing season-ticket holders note the deadline for renewing their reserved seat is 5pm today. After this date, all reserved seats will go on general sale.