York City Knights sign Newcastle Thunder forward Jesse Dee on a two-year deal

York City Knights have signed Jesse Dee from Newcastle Thunder on a two-year deal. Picture: Chris Lishman Photography
York City Knights have signed Jesse Dee from Newcastle Thunder on a two-year deal. Picture: Chris Lishman Photography

YORK City Knights have reinforced their forward depth with the signing of Jesse Dee on a two-year deal.

Dee arrives from fellow Betfred Championship side Newcastle Thunder, having spent last season there after joining from New South Wales Cup side Illawarra Cutters, for whom he played 17 games in the 2021 season.

A second-row or loose-forward by trade, the 27-year-old has had spells of playing at centre and in the halves.

“Jesse is a very talented and tough rugby player. He has played middle, edge back-row and filled in at half-back,” said Knights head coach James Ford.

“He runs intelligent lines and can find a pass which is something on occasions we’ve lacked.

“We’re all looking forward to building a strong relationship and helping him have a great 2023.”

Discussing his move to the Knights, Dee said: “With the Newcastle situation and going back to part time, Clint (Goodchild, Knights chairman) reached out and said the Knights were interested.

“I had a chat with him and then spoke to a few of the lads and yeah, it went from there.

“I spoke with him when York came up to play Newcastle recently and he gave me a call later that week, that was good.

“Fordy said the team are looking for a ball playing middle so that could probably fit me, but I can also play back row and some other positions.

"The plan will be to have a crack in pre-season and we’ll see where abouts I’ll fit in the team.

“It was a great chat with him, the ambition of where the club is at and where they want to go.”

Dee becomes the 19th confirmed Knights squad member for 2023, the deal having been supported by the club’s Squad Builder fund.

Also signed up for next year are Matty Marsh, Joe Brown, James Glover, Jacob Ogden, Brendan O’Hagan, Will Jubb, Jack Teanby, Chris Clarkson, Pauli Pauli, Jordan Thompson, Myles Harrison, AJ Towse, Brad Ward, Bailey Antrobus, Olly Butterworth, Ata Hingano and Josh Daley and Ukuma Ta’ai.