Leeds Rhinos give McShane and Hood new contracts

Paul McShane
Leeds hooker Paul McShane's debut came against Crusaders in 2009.

Leeds are preparing for the potential departure of veteran Danny Buderus by signing up young hookers Paul McShane and Liam Hood on new four-year deals.

"Liam has fantastic potential," said assistant coach Jimmy Lowes, "and Paul has already shown he is very skilful.

"The competition between them is a good thing. They work well with Danny and will push hard for a first-team place."

Buderus, 33, has a year left on his contract but has been approached by his former club Newcastle Knights.

Although Buderus is yet to announce his future plans, Leeds coach Brian McDermott is happy to go along whatever decision he makes.

"He's bouncing," said McDermott, ahead of this Friday night's play-off semi-final at Warrington. "He had one of his best games of the season on Friday.

"I don't have too much of a comment on next year but, whatever happens, he'll have my full support. It's been a pleasure to coach him this year."

McShane, 21, who made his first team debut in 2009 and spent time on loan at Hull FC last season, said: "This time last year I thought I would have to go out on loan to get game time with Matt Diskin and Danny Buderus at the club.

"But, when Matt moved on to Bradford, that gave me an opportunity and I am really pleased to have got 18 games under my belt so far this season.

"I am learning from two of the best hookers of all time in Jimmy Lowes and Danny Buderus and I am confident in my own ability."

Hood, 20, added: "I love being here and never wanted to join anyone else and hopefully I can get a shot at the first team next season.

"I really enjoy playing and training with Paul, we have struck up a good partnership in the Under-20s and our styles compliment each other.

"He has been starting the game, burning them up so when I come on I can open them up."

"They both know they need to be at their best or the other will get the chance and that will bring out the best in them," added former Leeds, Bradford and Great Britain hooker Lowes. "Both these players are good lads and have the potential to be top players.