A grand signing for Sheffield Eagles boss Mark Aston

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SHEFFIELD Eagles forward Alex Szostak has become the last player from the Grand Final winning team to sign a new contract.

The Scottish international’s decision to accept a new one-year deal gives coach Mark Aston a first team squad of 23 for 2013.

“It’s great news: Alex is an important part of the squad and was strong towards the end of last season,” said Aston. “I was always confident that Alex would stay. This clears the decks for when we start pre-season training next week.”

Szostak, who played for French club Villeneuve Leopards, joined the Eagles in 2008. Last season the back rower made 26 appearances scoring eight tries.

Aston’s squad includes five new players and the recruitment policy has followed the same pattern as last season with the signings having a proven record in the Championship.

Moving in are hooker James Davey, who was on loan from Wakefield during the second half of last season, stand-off Patch Walker (Dewsbury), forward Colton Roche (Leeds Rhinos) plus centres Tom Armstong (Swinton) and Matt Garside (York).

With Super League clubs dropping their u20s squads there are young players available but Aston hasn’t been tempted to make a late addition. “I’ll see what comes about. You never know who will come available,” he said.