The six ‘new faces’ from the NRL

Joe Burgess in his last competitive game for Wigan, in 2015
Joe Burgess in his last competitive game for Wigan, in 2015

The NRL’s increasing salary cap has seen recruitment from Down Under recede in recent year.

This season, there are only 12 arrivals from the NRL - and six have played in Super League before.

Of the six new faces, Leeds have high-hopes ex-Manly hooker Matt Parcel can fill the considerable void left by James Segeyaro’s controversial exit.

Segeyaro walked out on a new contract in the off-season, having made a huge impact in his short-time at Headingley.

Castleford have brought in Jesse Sene-Lafoa, a forward from Cronulla Sharks, while St Helens have two of the six newcomers - Ryan Morgan is a solid centre from Melbourne, while ex-Gold Coast Titans prop Luke Douglas is no stranger to these shores having played for Scotland in the recent Four Nations and the 2013 World Cup.

There are two outside backs, hoping to light up the competition - Brayden Wiliame has switched Manly for Catalans, and full-back Jake Mamo has moved from Newcastle Knights to Huddersfield.

Wigan have welcomed back Joe Burgess and Thomas Leuluai, two firm crowd-pleasers during their last stint at the DW Stadium.

Burgess moved to Sydney Roosters a year ago but, after struggling to crack into the first-team, switched to Michael Maguire’s Souths where he had far more success.

Leuluai has been a key player for the New Zealand Warriors since leaving Wigan at the end of 2012.

Like Burgess, Mike Cooper has returned to the club where he started his career – Warrington – following three years with St George Illawarra.

Cooper did well in the NRL, and at 28 will add experience to a solid Wolves pack.

Greg Bird has returned to Catalans, where he proved an instant hit in 2009. He may be 32 but Bird was playing State of Origin until last year, and his combination of skill and toughness should prove an asset for the Dragons.

They have also brought Sam Moa back to Super League – the compact, hard-running prop has been playing at Sydney Roosters since leaving Hull FC.

And Wakefield’s new halfback Sam Williams is no stranger to this competition - he had a 10-game stint with Catalans three years ago.