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Page last updated at 11:11 GMT, Thursday, 3 September 2009 12:11 UK

Quins seal one-year Esders deal


Harlequins have signed back-row forward Ryan Esders from Hull KR following a loan spell in the capital.

The 23-year-old becomes the first new signing the club has made this season, after agreeing a one-year contract.

He made just one substitute appearance for Rovers, but has played in six matches for Quins, scoring two tries.

Coach Brian McDermott told the club website: "Esders is a promising young player. We're glad he has chosen to further his career at Harlequins."

The signing of Esders marks the second stage of McDermott's squad building for 2010. Earlier this year, several key players including captain Rob Purdham, Chad Randall and Danny Orr signed contract extensions and now the focus is on recruiting.

We're starting to look at bringing new players into the squad

Harlequins RL coach Brian McDermott

McDermott added: "He is the first player we've brought in from outside the club. We're now starting to look at the market and bringing new players into the squad."

Esders added: "During my loan spell here I've really enjoyed working with all the players and coaches and am very happy to be staying.

"The coaching staff have been great with me, especially Brian McDermott who has been very helpful and takes his time to work on my game.

"Harlequins are a great club with a really strong development side, something I think many players, including myself, don't appreciate until they come down to London."

Meanwhile, McDermott believes his players are still focused on making the play-offs.

Quins sit 10th in the Super League table with two games remaining, having won only one of their last 10 matches.

McDermott told BBC London 94.9: "We've had a few days off but the boys are ready to go.

"We are involved with a group of players that are focused and have an incredible amount of drive to make the play-offs, we're just having a rough run."

Ahead of Sunday's date with Castleford, McDermott sees the potential disappointment of not achieving a play-off spot as a more overriding concern.

"I don't feel the pressure," he said. "I just think the disappointment increases more. Before each game, as a coach, you try to take pressure away from the players.

When you've lost your fourth, fifth and sixth on the bounce it becomes hard to say the right things

Harlequins RL coach Brian McDermott

"In the build-up to each game we try not to make it a must-win. Let's just take care of what we've got to take care of.

"It's just when you've lost your fourth, fifth and sixth on the bounce it becomes hard to say the right things and get the boys back up for the next game.

"As a group of people we know what we have to do. We've proven this year that we can do that and we've certainly got the squad for it. There are just certain things that are not happening for us at the moment."

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see also
Hull 26-6 Harlequins
21 Aug 09 |  Rugby League
Harlequins RL 22-26 Salford
15 Aug 09 |  Rugby League
Howell to miss rest of campaign
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Harlequins 18-42 Bradford
08 Aug 09 |  Rugby League
Super League Show
17 Feb 08 |  Rugby League

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