St George Illawarra Dragons grant Jamie Soward immediate release to join London Broncos
The Daily Telegraph
June 17, 2013 6:46PM
Jamie Soward's days as a Dragon are over. Picture: Brett Costello Source: The Daily Telegraph
JAMIE Soward has played his final game for St George Illawarra after finalising a short-term deal with UK Super League outfit the London Broncos.
The Dragons granted Soward a release from the final four months of his current contract, clearing a path for the 28-year-old to link with London prior to taking up a four-season deal at Penrith in 2014.
Having been dropped following St George Illawarra's round 12 loss to Canterbury, Soward has spent the past two weekends playing for NSW Cup feeder side Illawarra Cutters.
It's understood Dragons coach Steve Price was not satisfied with the five-eighth's form, as well as some minor disciplinary issues that gave an insight into his state of mind.
Soward's agent, Sam Ayoub, began negotiating with UK Super League clubs over a week ago but had to wait until today to secure the release.
Soward has also applied for a UK work permit and is expected to leave Australia as soon as next week.
"Whilst I would have liked to have finished the season out, I am looking forward to the opportunity presented to me overseas for the remainder of this season," Soward said.
"Rugby league is a business and this is the right thing for me and the Dragons."
St George Illawarra CEO Peter Doust admitted Soward's sudden demise was not ideal.
"It is fair to say that mid-season signings and transfers are not ideal for clubs, players or fans but that is the system in which we work," Doust said.
"This is not how the club or Jamie envisaged things would end and efforts were made to avoid this circumstance, but both parties agree that this is the best outcome."
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Titans rule out bid for Bulldogs star Ben Barba
Gold Coast Bulletin
June 18, 2013 12:00AM
Canterbury star fullback Ben Barba. Source: Getty Images
THE Titans will not try to sign Dally M medallist Ben Barba, with coach John Cartwright declaring William Zillman will be Gold Coast's long-term fullback.
Cartwright last night ruled the Titans out of contention for Barba, who is shaping as Corey Norman's successor at the Broncos next year if Canterbury agree to release him from the final two years of his contract with the Bulldogs.
The Titans and Broncos were linked to Barba last week, with Gold Coast co-owner Darryl Kelly saying the club would consider signing the livewire No.1.
But Cartwright said that would not be the case, instead throwing his support behind vice-captain Zillman who is in the first season of a five-year contract.
"We're totally happy with Zilly at fullback," he said.
"He's in as good a form as any fullback in the game at the moment.
"Ben Barba is from Queensland and there's talk of his ex-partner and children moving back to the Gold Coast. People put two and two together."
Cartwright's assurance will be welcome news for Zillman, believed to have been alarmed at the Titans continually being linked to fullbacks such as Josh Dugan, Matt Bowen and English star Sam Tomkins.
Last edited by rhugh89; 02-07-2013 at 03:47 PM.
hung up on the glory days
heard a whisper today that souths may not be able to afford to keep Isaac Luke...if it's true then WOW!
St George-Illawarra sign Harry Siejka as potential answer to replacing departing Jamie Soward
- JUNE 20, 2013 10:57AM
New Dragon Harry Siejka made his NRL debut for Penrith before more rceently being on contract with the Warriors. Picture: Getty Images Source: Supplied
ST GEORGE-ILLAWARRA have signed pivot Harry Siejka for the rest of the 2013 season as a potential replacement for Jamie Soward, who was released by the NRL club this week.
Siejka will begin training immediately with NSW Cup side the Illawarra Cutters and is contracted until the end of October, the Dragons said in a statement on Thursday.Siejka was on a two-year deal with the Warriors but was released earlier this month for personal reasons, including the need to be closer to his family.The 21-year-old made his NRL debut in 2011 in the halves for Penrith, playing four first-grade matches."I'm really excited by the opportunity to play for the Dragons as they're a club with a rich and proud history," Siejka said in a statement."I'm very thankful to be a part of the club and look forward to getting stuck into training alongside my new teammates."The signing comes just three days after Soward was granted an immediate release by the Dragons to join English Super League strugglers the London Broncos.He will join Penrith next year on a four-year deal.
Reni Maitua is considering a mid-season switch of clubs
Reni Maitua is considering a mid-season switch of clubs.. Source: Getty Images
RENI Maitua could play his last game for Parramatta today, with the face of the Ricky Stuart cleanout being hunted by rival clubs.
Set to line up for Eels in their ANZ Stadium clash with South Sydney, Maitua admitted his future could be decided in the next seven days.The Eels captain is considering a mid-season switch.The Sunday Telegraph can reveal that Maitua's manager Sam Ayoub has held discussion with several clubs about an immediate switch, with at least two Sydney-based outfits serious about signing the former Test player.Despite being told he was one of 12 players fighting for their futures at the Eels, Maitua has been a stand-out player for the club this season and has showed he still has plenty to offer.
With a year left to run on his contract with the Eels, Maitua has been told he is free to go and he could be granted an immediate release this week if he can secure a deal before the June 30 transfer cut-off for mid-season transfers.That is looming as a serious option for Maitua, 31, who is adamant he still has plenty to offer in the NRL."I have to have a look around," he said."Ricky wants to keep me to the end of the year, but if something comes up between now and the 30th I would have to look at it."I love Parramatta, but I kind of have to look after myself and if I have to make a change by June 30, which is going to help my cause for another year, then I will do it."
Maitua said he was unaware of what options he had because Ayoub was handling the negotiations."At this stage I have left that up to my manager," Maitua said."I don't really want to think about it too much because my focus is playing well for the Eels and playing the game against Souths."My focus is still the Eels."Maitua said he would not leave the Eels unless he could find a strong club at which to finish his career."There are only a few clubs I would consider going to," he said."There is no point in leaving in going to a club that might be going through a rebuilding phase."I am looking for a club that has good management, good structures and something that is going to fit well with me and the style of game I play. I have to weigh all that up."Maitua also flagged the possibility of ending his stellar, yet controversial career early."If these things don't come into play then retirement would be another option," Maitua said." I won't go to England and I won't move away from my family."Maitua stressed he would still be committed to Parramatta should he not be able to find a suitable deal."My heart is still with Parramatta at this stage," he said."And it will be until the day I leave. I love the club and they are the ones that gave me a life-line and an opportunity and I still want to repay them."
Out of favour Warriors winger, Daniel Tupou, joins Canberra Raiders effective immediatley until the end of 2015
Lagi Setu of to Canberra as well next season and Former Newcastle Knight of to Salford
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Also a couple of re-signings for the Sharks with Tupou and Luetele staying on board.
The Mole from the RLW has reported the following...
* Cronulla Sharks are chasing Jack Wighton
* Nathan Friend may stay at Warriors after all
* Manly have signed Tyson Andrews from the McKay Cutters, He has apparently been on their radar for a while
* Stewart Mills will leave the Sharks, At the moment the Eels lead the race for his signature
* Josh Perry is looking for a new club after falling out of favour with St Helens coach Nathan Brown
* Sharks after Roy Asotasi
* Warrior to sign 19yo English Prop Jordan Baldwinson from Leeds
* Mickey Paea is apparently staying with Hull in the UK now after expressing a desire to return to the NRL
* Storm Prop Siosaia Vave being chased by Manly and the Broncos
Originally Posted by Afro Zac
Haha yep, thats the one. Bill Tupou, Daniel Tupou is my mates name and i got confused
Originally Posted by cowboyman
Wighton would be a massive signing for the Sharks.
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Haha yea, when I read it was a little confused at first until I clicked on the link lol.
Originally Posted by Afro Zac
Cory Paterson wants to return to Australia, has been released by Hull KR.
According to FSN, Mose Masoe released from Penrith to join esl effective immediately.
South Sydney prop Roy Asotasi signs a two-year deal to play Super League in England
South Sydney stalwart Roy Asotasi is heading to England to play Super League. Picture: Costello Brett Source: The Daily Telegraph
POWERHOUSE Rabbitohs prop Roy Asotasi is likely to finish his NRL career this year after signing a two-year deal to play in England.
Asotasi will join Super League club Warrington Wolves next season.The captain of Samoa, and former Kiwi representative, has been a big part of South Sydney's ascension to the top of the NRL ladder this year.At 31, Asotasi has achieved most things in the game, including winning a premiership with the Bulldogs in 2004.At one time Asotasi was considered the best prop in the world.After some injury-plagued seasons he has shown some of his best form in 2013.Rabbitohs chief executive Shane Richardson said Asotasi kick-started the club's "revolution'' when he joined them back in 2007."Roy was the best prop forward in the game at the time and his faith in the vision for the club has led us to where we are heading now,'' Richardson said. "Roy is one of our forward leaders and will always be remembered as such, and now he has an opportunity to extend his career at a quality English Club in Warrington.''Sydney Asotasi said he's looking forward to beginning his new adventure in England but added the ride is not over with the Rabbitohs.
"I'll always think of myself as a South Sydney boy, and I'll be looking forward to the next chapter of my career once this season comes to a close," the prop said.
"We have much more to achieve at this club and the job isn't done yet. I'm looking forward to playing my part for the rest of the year."
Rabbitohs coach Michael Maguire praised Asotasi's professionalism and his part in mentoring several players in his current ladder-leading squad.
"He wanted the club to progress in the right direction and he's played a huge role in helping us take that direction," Maguire said.
Asotasi will join his teammates in Perth this week ahead of Sunday's match against the Warriors.
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North Queensland Cowboys fullback Matt Bowen playing for his career
Matthew Bowen in action for the Cowboys. Source: Getty Images
FAVOURITE son Matt Bowen has two games to save his career as Cowboys hierarchy confront one of the most complex contract negotiations in the club's 18-year history.
After months of uncertainty surrounding Bowen's future, recruitment chief Peter Parr says the coming weeks will provide a definitive answer on whether the fullback magician remains in the NRL next season.Bowen, the most capped player in Cowboys history with 261 NRL games, is keen to extend his career in Townsville for at least another 12 months.But the Cowboys still have not tabled a new deal.The Courier-Mail understands the club's medical reports, coupled with Bowen's training data this season, indicate his reconstructed knees will struggle to cope with another NRL campaign in 2014.
By virtue of his gravitas and popularity at the Cowboys, the club is reluctant to push Bowen out the door.However, D-day has arrived for the former Maroons custodian, whose upcoming performances will make or break his contract hopes.Bowen could rush back from knee surgery against Canberra on Sunday, although it is more likely the subsequent games against Manly and Brisbane will determine if he is forced into retirement."In the next few weeks we can make an assessment on where Matthew is going," Parr said.
"Matthew and I have had a fair few discussions about it, so we're all clear on where it is going and what the time frame will be."It has gone on a bit longer than it has for a normal NRL player because of the status he has, not only for the club but throughout the region."We'll continue to show him the respect he deserves. Clearly we are getting closer to a decision on whether he continues to play at the club or not, but we are giving him every opportunity."Despite having outlaid millions to secure Origin quartet Johnathan Thurston, Brent Tate, Matt Scott and James Tamou, it is understood the Cowboys have salary cap room to accommodate Bowen.Parr assured Bowen, 31, a final call on his future would not be taken out of his hands.
"The decision will be made in consultation with Matthew, his manager and the appropriate people at this club, including medical staff," the Cowboys football manager said."The decision will be one of consultation, not where we make the final decision for him."We're hopeful that Matthew will play next Sunday against Canberra, if not the week after against Manly."He's had some good sessions on the knee, he's going well, but he will have to do a bit more contact.
"Unfortunately, everyone who is looking for an answer will have to have some patience."Halfback Robert Lui, one of Bowen's closest confidantes at the Cowboys, says the veteran fullback is being tight-lipped about his future."I wish he can play with us for a couple more years," he said."I'm pretty close with Matty and whatever decision he makes, I will back him up 100 per cent."Matty doesn't really talk about his future when we catch up, we talk about life and other things."It's a hard decision for the club. I can't see Matty without a Cowboys jersey on, but he needs to do what is best for himself and his family."
Broncos double dip with signing of Tasi brothers
Lama Tasi has joined the Broncos from the Roosters. Source: The Daily Telegraph
THE Brisbane Broncos have double-downed on their Tasis, with prop Lama to be joined at the club by his 18-year-old little brother.
Tautalatasi Tasi plays as hard as his name is to pronounce, starring as a back for the Ipswich Jets in the Intrust Super Cup.Both have been snatched from the Sydney Roosters, with giant prop Lama (pictured) struggling to get a chance in first grade and desiring a return to his Goodna home.There is also another talented Tasi, high school student Sani, who is still on scholarship with the Roosters.Lama is unlikely to play for the Broncos until their round 20 clash against North Queensland, joining his brother at the Jets until then.The 23-year-old is only signed for this year, but the Broncos hope to extend him to a longer deal if he fits into the club as well as expected.
Blooded into the Intrust Super Cup two months ago, Tautalatasi has starred on the wing.Jets chairman Steve Johnson said the Ipswich Grammar product had the work ethic to achieve a stellar rugby league career."He came into Cup six weeks ago and each game he's getting better," Johnson said."He's very talented and comes from a very hard-working family and you can see that in how he trains and plays."I hope he gets to stay with us in Cup and play against men for a while yet."Young Broncos backrower Corey Oates has been in such good form for their under-20s team he is tipped to be just one more star performance away from first grade.He scored three tries against the Warriors last week and has stayed with the NRL team during their Auckland camp.
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Matt Cooper undecided on NRL retirement
By Rob Forsaith
Tue 02nd July, 6:36pm
Veteran Dragons centre Matt Cooper is still weighing up whether to retire from the NRL at the end of the season
A persistent toe injury has prevented St George Illawarra centre Matt Cooper making a call on whether to end his NRL career at the end of this season.
Cooper, a fan favourite at the Dragons over the past 10 years and one of their best in the 2010 premiership season, is coming off contract.
Twitter rumours circulated on Monday that Cooper, who has been sidelined since the club's Anzac Day clash with the Sydney Roosters, was to announce his retirement the following day.
The 34-year-old reaffirmed on Tuesday that a 10-week stint on the sidelines had provided plenty of frustration, but no clarity on his future.
"I've still got a lot of thinking to do ... the first thing I want to do is just get back on the field," Cooper said."I said at the start of the year I'd make a decision about halfway through the season."But getting this injury has thrown a spanner in the works."If I don't get back to the field this year, and I can't play my best footy, it'd be a shame to go out like that.""So that's why I've got to wait until I get back to the field."
There is a chance that won't happen in 2013, but Cooper is maintaining his optimism."Time is running out. There isn't too many games to go," he said."I'm pretty confident I will be out there this season."I'll know more in the next week or two, but I think it's at the point where I'm pretty close."
Cooper has been doing everything possible to mend the ligament underneath one of the toes on his right foot, including the use of a carbon-fibre sole in his shoe.
Dragons coach Steve Price admitted his side, languishing in 15th place on the table, desperately needed their prized centre to return."We've certainly been missing him," Price said.
St George Illawarra halfback Nathan Fien is also off contract at the end of the season.
"I haven't given too much thought to it, but I'd like to go around again if there was an opportunity," Fien said on Tuesday."I'm not discounting looking elsewhere, in England or another NRL club, or even coaching," the No.7 added when asked if he'd retire if the Dragons didn't offer him a new deal.
Last edited by rhugh89; 03-07-2013 at 03:17 AM.