ROSSENDALE Rugby Club’s powerful centre Sam Bedlow has been snapped up by Aviva Premiership giants Sale Sharks.

It is a dream come true for the former Haslingden High School lad, who has recently graduated from Myerscough College with a Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Rugby Studies.

“I’m so excited by this opportunity and I’ll be joining Sale Sharks for the start of their pre-season schedule at the end of the month,” said the 17-year-old.

“When I was playing amateur rugby with Rossendale it was something that I had hoped for one day, but to actually put pen to paper on a professional contract with Sale is incredible.

“My dad coached at Rossendale and I loved playing there – it is a brilliant club and they helped me so much.

“But my game has really developed over the twelve months, playing for Sale’s Under-18 squad.

“I was on the bench for a couple of Sale’s A team games last season and that has given me a real taste for it.

“I also trained with Sale’s senior squad over Easter and that was a fantastic experience.”

Sam, who can also operate as a winger, added: “There’s a lot of hard work ahead but now my ambition is to try and get in to the first team.”

Sale’s Academy Manager Ray Unsworth said: “Sam will hopefully progress through the system we have in place at Sale Sharks.

“Our Academy scouting operation scours the North-West and beyond and we are able to offer the best young talent like Sam an opportunity to make the grade.”