Rugby League has been coursing through the veins of Bramley Buffaloes new boy Jim Shuttleworth since he was old enough to pick up a ball!
The 28-year-old back row forward has just returned from a two year stint with Southport Tigers in the Queensland Rugby League and he can’t wait for the Buffaloes 2009 home Co-operative Conference National season to get started.
“I’m chomping at the bit!” exclaimed Jim who works for the RFL as their National Youth Volunteer Manager, a role that sees him managing a team of eight staff across the UK.
“I joined Bramley because of their history and also because of coach Mark Butterill who I’ve worked and played with before at Milford and Leeds Met. I had no hesitation whatsoever when Buttsy made the call!
“He’s pushed us incredibly hard in pre-season and all of the lads are raring to go,” added Jim who hails from St Helens and first played the game, aged nine, with amateur side Blackbrook.
He also describes himself as a passionate Evertonian with a keen interest in most sports including American Football although, when it comes to Gridiron, he prefers the armchair to the pitch!
“Bramley is a very well known name in the game of rugby league football and a club that carries a lot of heritage. That was a big reason behind my decision and it will be fantastic to be playing in front of such loyal supporters and I’m looking forward to seeing a big crowd at our first home game with Nottingham Outlaws on April 19th.
“I’ve had some fantastic times in the sport especially when I was a student at Leeds Met. I captained the side to their 2001 Grand Final triumph at Salford and that has to be my proudest moment to date. We broke all sorts of records that season but I’m hoping to make a little bit of history with the Buffaloes in 2009.
“I played for Leeds Akkies for a few seasons and also coached Milford at the age of 23 which made me the youngest ever coach of a National Conference side.
“It was while I was at Milford that I met Buttsy and I know a number of the current Bramley squad from Leeds Met. It’s their enthusiasm and passion that’s drawn me into the Buffaloes fold for what will be a fantastic season starting at Warrington on April 11th!” said Jim who lives in Kirkstall with partner of six years Lucy.
It seems that one of Bramley’s newest recruits is all set to add another chapter to what has been a fascinating life in the thirteen-a-side code.