Clubs moving fast to lock up NRL talent

alex

New member
Joined
Jul 12, 2009
Messages
3,748
Location
Haberfield
By Steve Jancetic AAP
Wed, 12 Aug 2009 15:02:00

It looms as the hottest free agent class in the history of the NRL, the likes of Jarryd Hayne, Michael Jennings, Johnathan Thurston and Anthony Watmough all up for grabs.

Only problem is, you can't get a hold of them until 2011.

But such is the demand for the game's bona fide stars that NRL chief executives have been sent into a mad panic to lock up their biggest names despite players having more than 12 months still to run on their current deals.

It's all in a attempt to avoid a bidding war, with teams banned from talking to players from rival clubs until the final year of their contract, which does not begin until November 1.

And that's not including advances from other competitions and codes, with Super League, rugby union and now AFL keeping a keen eye on the NRL's talent pool.

Already Brisbane coach Ivan Henjak has said he would be interested in talking to Hayne, the Broncos planning for a future that does not include AFL-bound Karmichael Hunt.

North Queensland skipper Thurston has been linked to Japanese rugby union as well as former club the Bulldogs, while Jennings last week revealed he was free to leave Penrith after next season.

That prompted Panthers chief executive Mick Leary to put a reported $2 million four-year deal on the table, Leary admitting long-term planning was just part and parcel of the business.

"It's just a matter of keeping the marquee players that you want," Leary said.

"We're working towards making sure Michael knows that he's in the future plans of our squad.

"We all know he's a talent and we're very happy with him and he's happy to be here."

Jennings, Hayne and Thurston are just the tip of the iceberg in what shapes as a stellar group.

In fact, if a club chief executive wanted to start from scratch and was able to get his hands on a creative accountant, there is a 17-man squad on offer that would be the envy of every team in the competition.

Hayne, the game's hottest player, would slip nicely into the No.1 jumper, with his Eels teammates Krisnan Inu and Eric Grothe on the wings.

The centres could be the NSW State of Origin pairing of Jennings and Manly's Jamie Lyon, while Dally M medal favourite Jamie Soward and Test halfback Thurston would make for a deadly halves pairing.

Up front, follicly-challenged lookalikes Luke Bailey and the Dragons' Michael Weyman would give the side plenty of go-forward, with tough-as-nails Canberra skipper Alan Tongue slotting in at hooker.

The potential backrow would have edge defenders looking for somewhere to hide - with Watmough joined by Sea Eagles teammate Glenn Stewart and North Queensland's Luke O'Donnell.

Need some impact off the bench? How about Ben Hornby, Feleti Mateo, Frank Pritchard and Josh Perry.

The 17 doesn't even includes the likes of Titans pair Ashley Harrison and Mark Minichiello, Sydney Roosters duo Willie Mason and Braith Anasta, or injured Cronulla skipper Trent Barrett - all of whom are off contract next year.

–--------------------------------------

Lots of top players off contract. Who would you take? Remembering they wont start til 2011.

I'd have a go at Watmough. By 2011, I'd say Payten and Skando will be in retirement or in their last year, so Ellis, Watmough and Heighno would make a devastating back row. Otherwise Mateo would go well at lock.
Panthers paying $500,000 a year for Jennings is a bit much I reckon. They need a decent 1,6 or 9 first.
Hayne would demand a heap of money and if he doesnt stay with Parra or go to the Broncos I'd say Rugby would snap him up.
 

Scotto

New member
Joined
Jul 12, 2009
Messages
65
Location
All Along The Watchtower
We'd have no chance at Watmough, the majority of those players would be out of our price range I'd say, would like to see the club sign someone like Sims or even Perry at a stretch, Skando & Payten won't be going around for much longer and prop is a position we're constantly struggling with depth-wise
 

system

New member
Joined
Jan 8, 2019
Messages
11,941
I have severe doubts Skando will be around next season.

He came back to take a front office job and have some ejoyment while nurturing talent in State Cup.

He is a warrior and is doing what the club asks but it is a fact that he has trouble getting out of bed after a game and he did not come home to put his body through the weekly NRL grind.

We have players who, with an off-season, will take up the working prop mantle
 

alexaki

New member
Joined
Jul 11, 2009
Messages
5,288
@smeghead said:
I have severe doubts Skando will be around next season.

Skando this year is in top form and can hold his own against top shelf props running around…if he wants to play next year we'd be follish not to find room for him!..Look at "Petrol 70c a liter"...he's in career best form and he's a few years older than Skando!
 

Chadman_s_Ghost

New member
Joined
Jul 15, 2009
Messages
552
With the value of today's 'contract' about as much as a piece of toilet paper- why bother rushing to sign players?

If a player wants out of a deal, all they have to do is pout & they are free to go.

NRL should implement a 'transfer window' at the end of the season to the beginning of the new one- and the contracts are BINDING.

Otherwise- there's no need for 'advance planning'.
 
G

gct

Guest
@Chadman's Ghost said:
why bother rushing to sign players?

If a player wants out of a deal, all they have to do is pout & they are free to go.

Sad but true!!
 

Gary_Bakerloo

New member
Joined
Jul 14, 2009
Messages
2,554
@smeghead said:
but it is a fact that he has trouble getting out of bed after a game and he did not come home to put his body through the weekly NRL grind.

God had a day off after creating the world, so I see no reason why Skando can't have a day off here and there.
 

Latest posts

Top