Hughes set for Fury switch

Defender poised to leave Walsall for Australia

Hughes: Fury-bound

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Walsall have revealed that defender Mark Hughes will join Australian side North Queensland Fury.

The 23-year-old signed for the Saddlers from Northampton Town last year and made 26 league appearances for the club in the 2009/10 season.

But, having received a proposal from North Queensland Fury, Hughes has opted to leave England for a new chapter in his career.

"Mark contacted me late last week regarding an offer he had received from Australia," Hutchings said on the club's official website.

"We spoke at length about the move and agreed to go our separate ways. Mark feels that this is an opportunity he wants to pursue and we will not stand in his way."

Hughes said: "The offer came a little bit out of the blue. It is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and if I don't go for it I think I'll always be thinking 'what if'.

"I have no ties to this country. I'm not in a relationship and I don't have any children, so this is the perfect time to try something completely new.

"These opportunities don't come round very often and, after much deliberation, I want to give it a go.

"It's not a decision I've taken lightly. I've really enjoyed my time at Walsall and will miss the players, staff and fans. It's a good club and I wish them well."