Leeds Rhinos' teenage star Stevie Ward has turned down a trip to Australia in order to push for a place in the Carnegie Challenge Cup final. The 18-year-old loose forward, who has been dubbed the new Kevin Sinfield, was due to fly out on
Thursday with the England Academy squad for their four-match tour but has decided to put club before country and today signed a new five-year contract with the World Club champions. Ward, who recently completed his A-levels, made his Super
League debut earlier this year and was a substitute in the Rhinos' 39-28 Challenge semi-final win over Wigan . Had he gone on tour, he would have missed Leeds' next four league games which would effectively rule him out of contention for the Wembley showdown with Warrington on August 25.