Keith Mason has confirmed he will be returning to play at The Mobile Rocket Stadium (formerly Belle Vue) for the first time since 2001 (wearing the colours of Trinity) when the PDRL team play Leeds Rhinos on Sunday, 8th April.
He made his debut at 17 for Wakefield and earned the Player of the Year Award in an impressive Academy team featuring Gareth Ellis, Danny Brough and Ben Westwood.
Despite being coveted by Leeds Rhinos, Melbourne Storm signed Mason for an undisclosed fee and, at the time, was the youngest ever English player to sign for an NRL team. Since then, a successful career followed via St Helens (with whom he won a Challenge Cup in 2004), Huddersfield Giants and Castleford Tigers before retiring in 2013.
A chance meeting in 2009 with Mickey Rourke following the Challenge Cup Final set the tone for his post-Rugby career within acting and he landed a role in movie ‘Skin Traffik’ alongside Rourke and Daryl Hannah which was released in 2015.
In July he plays the lead in a film called ‘Harry Masters’ – about a Boxer who is instructed to kill a news reporter to pay off a substantial debt. From late next year filming should start on a movie he is producing, co-writing and starring in, called Rugby Blood.
Recently, Keith became an Ambassador for the Physical Disability Rugby League team at Wakefield Trinity and has now agreed to pull on the boots back where it all started.
Together, with his partner Riona Kelly-Hawes, they are promoting disability sport far beyond Rugby League. A link with Timestep Community Dance, providing an opportunity to dance for disabled children and adults, will see the dance troupe partner with Wakefield Trinity Disability Rugby League.
Keith said, “I’m genuinely excited to pull the boots back on and play alongside some inspirational people. This is where it all began for me and I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Wakefield. When I signed for Melbourne it was an opportunity that not many British players had so it wasn’t something I wanted to turn down. Being able to support Wakefield Trinity in raising the profile of disability sport was the best way I could say thank you for the opportunity I was given. We are now giving others the same opportunity who never thought possible.
“It won’t be about me, Nigel Wright or Alan Hunte when we step out onto that pitch next weekend but we won’t enjoy it any less than any of the athletes on that field.”