Boom Wests Tigers centre Chris Lawrence has confirmed he’s close to securing a new long-term deal with the club.
The 22-year-old, who made his NRL debut for the Tigers in 2006, admits he has received offers from rival NRL clubs but says his strong preference is to remain with the Tigers.
“Hopefully we can finalise (the deal) in the next week or two and have that done but I’ve always said I love to have the opportunity to play at the one club and hopefully I’m a bit closer to getting that opportunity,” Lawrence said.
“My manager’s been out there and I’ve had a few offers, not strong offers just a bit of interest from other clubs.”
“But I mean I’m happy here, I love the guys, love the group and I really believe in the group we’ve got here so I wouldn’t want to go anywhere else.”
“I’m happy at the Tigers and I’m happy with my development and they’ve given me opportunities so I’d love to pay them back with a bit of loyalty.”
Lawrence underlined his importance to the Tigers on Saturday night, crossing twice in his side’s narrow 20-12 victory over New Zealand Warriors.
And the importance of locking the one-Test centre long term is not lost on veteran coach Tim Sheens.
“Chris and Blake Ayshford make a pretty fair centre pairing and I think most clubs would quite happy to have them, so we’d like to make sure that we’ve got those two signed for a good period of time and I think we’re close to finalising Chrissy,” Sheens said.
“He’s a future big-time player for us and more and more he comes up with the goods every game, so I’m very, very pleased to have him in my footy team.”