The Canberra Raiders will welcome former Dally M winning halfback Matt Orford to training this week, after he agreed to join the club for the 2011 season, subject to the final completion of his release from English Super League Club Bradford.

Orford will commence training with the club Wednesday and is hopeful of officially becoming a Raider within the next few days, after his management finalises his terms of release from Bradford.

Orford said he’s looking forward to the challenge of returning to the NRL and the Raiders and said the prospect of playing with an exciting young team was one he was eager to be a part of.

“The Raiders are a team on the rise and the way they finished the season last year shows they will be in the running again in 2011,” Orford said. “They have some exciting young players coming through and it would be a fantastic opportunity to play alongside the likes of Josh Dugan, Jarrod Croker and Daniel Vidot.”

Raiders Coach David Furner said he would welcome a player of Orford’s experience to the club with open arms and said his signing could be the experience the club needed to progress further in the 2011 season.

“Matt’s proven over a number of seasons that he’s one of the most experienced and quality halves in the game,” Furner said. “Having his experience in our young backline playing behind our big forward pack would be a huge step for us this season.”