WESTS TIGERS captain and full-back Brett Hodgson is joining the Giants.
The vastly-experienced 30-year-old has signed a two-year contract for the start of the 2009 season and will join up with four of his former Tigers teammates.
He follows in the footsteps of Shane Elford, Jamahl Lolesi, John Skandalis and Paul Whatuira and should prove a valuable addition for the Giants as they look to solve their problem full-back position.
So far this season, captain Chris Thorman, Leroy Cudjoe and Rod Jensen have started as the last line of defence, with Elford having also had a spell at full-back.
But with Hodgson having played at full-back six times for New South Wales in Australia’s State of Origin series between 2002 and 2006, he will be the club’s automatic choice for Super League XIV.
The Giants have been linked with the Tigers inspirational captain for several seasons, as too have Wigan Warriors.
But Huddersfield have been able to make their move now because of the salary-cap constraints in Australia.
“It’s going to be sad but at the same time I’m excited,” said Hodgson.
“It’s a new challenge, playing in a competition on the other side of the world, and a new chapter in my footballing life.
“It’s been quite a drawn-out process. There was a period when there were not a lot of options.
“Because of the salary cap factor in Australia, staying here is not really an option. We approached other NRL clubs but there is not a lot going because there are a ton of quality full-backs.
“There was a little bit of interest in the UK, not as much as last year, but you’ve got to take the opportunity when it knocks on your door.”
Like the current Giants’ former Wests Tigers quartet, Hodgson was a member of their Australian NRL Grand Final-winning team and is an established goalkicker.
He has made a total of 212 appearances in the NRL.