Wakefield Wildcats sign Newcastle Knights' Steve Southern

Steve Southern
Southern has more than 100 NRL appearances to his name

Wakefield Trinity Wildcats have agreed a deal for back-row forward Steve Southern from Australian side Newcastle Knights for the 2012 season.

The 29-year-old has signed a three-year contract subject to UK Border approval.

Southern has made more than 100 appearances in the NRL having also played for North Queensland Cowboys.

Wakefield have also tied former New Zealand international Motu Tony, 29, into a new one-year deal with the option of a 12-month extension.

The Samoa-born full-back represented the Kiwis 18 times during which time he won the 2005 Tri Nations competition.

He joined the Wildcats at the start of the season but has been limited to just six appearances after breaking his hand at the start of the year.

Southern said of his move: "With a new owner, new Super League licence and new coach it really is the start of something new and I'm stoked to be a part of that."

Wildcats chief executive James Elston added: "Steve is a great addition to our squad for the next three years, his NRL experience will provide a great boost to many of our younger players and his ruthless playing style will be great for our supporters to see.

"I have heard many great things about Steve's work ethic and he has been a popular member with both fans and players at every team he has been at, I'm sure he will be a perfect fit at the Wildcats. I look forward to his arrival and seeing him in action for Wakefield."

Southern will join Crusaders centre Vince Mellars, who joined on Monday, at the club for next season.