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Widdop is Returning to NRL

Discussion in 'St George Illawarra Dragons' started by gregstar, Nov 25, 2020.

  1. gregstar

    gregstar Referee

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    It appears that Widderp is returning to the NRL permanently. Apparently his manager is trying to finalise a deal with the Cowboys which would allow the Knitts to grab Jake Clifford of them.

    What a pity we couldn't punt abNormal.

    Alas.
     
  2. Gareth67

    Gareth67 First Grade

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    Perhaps this is what Griffin has been waiting on in regards to the early release of Josh Maguire ? ? Shame that our regular halves pairing are still under contract as even at his age I believe that Gaz would had offered more spark to our attack , but not to be .
     
  3. Eatons Hill Dragon

    Eatons Hill Dragon Juniors

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    Norman to Cows, we get our old Skipper back.
    Even if he is half the player he was that is still a massive upgrade on Norman.
    My favourite player through the McGregor years. Imagine if he got to play his best years under a better Coach.
    In saying all that Sullivan is now our future moving forward.
     
  4. BLM01

    BLM01 First Grade

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    I agree re Gaz.. if only :laughing:
     
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  5. _snafu_

    _snafu_ Referee

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    Living in Northern England < Living in Townsville
     
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  6. gregstar

    gregstar Referee

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    Gareth Widdop is set to make a permanent move back to the NRL
    [​IMG]
    Former Storm and Dragons playmaker Gareth Widdop’s contract with Warrington is about to end Picture: Getty Images
    • North Queensland have been offered the chance to sign Gareth Widdop as part of a deal that would allow Jake Clifford to make an immediate switch to Newcastle.

    Widdop is on his way back to Australia, having completed his commitments with Warrington in the Super League. It is understood he would be open to making his return a permanent one provided he can find a new club in the NRL.

    That’s where the Cowboys fit in. The Knights on Tuesday confirmed that Clifford would join them in 2022, having been denied the opportunity to make an immediate switch to Newcastle for the upcoming season.


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    The Cowboys had been exploring their options and coach Todd Payten initially held talks with former teammate Benji Marshall. However, they were unable to strike a deal and Clifford was told that he would be required to stay in Townsville for a further 12 months.

    Widdop has now appeared on the club’s radar, although it is understood his price tag is currently an impediment to any deal being struck. That may change should Widdop and his management reduce their demands.


    However, it is understood Warrington are resigned to Widdop staying in Australia. The Australian understands a handful of clubs in the NRL have been contacted by Warrington in recent weeks inquiring whether they would be interested in swapping players for Widdop.

    It is not believed the Cowboys were among those clubs, but Widdop’s management subsequently reached out to North Queensland to gauge whether they would be interested in the England international.

    As part of his release from St George Illawarra at the end of 2019, the Dragons were given first right of refusal on Widdop. However, it is understood they have no issue with him signing elsewhere and will not stand in his way should he choose to return to the NRL.

    The Dragons are loaded in the halves. Corey Norman, initially mentioned as a potential swap for Widdop, has another year remaining on his deal while Ben Hunt recently took up his million-dollar option for the 2023 season.

    They also have Adam Clune, Junior Amone and Jayden Sullivan under contract. Newcastle, meanwhile, confirmed on Tuesday that Clifford would join them from 2022.

    The 22-year-old was viewed as North Queensland’s long-term partner for Michael Morgan in the halves but struggled to find a regular place in the NRL side.

    He made it clear in talks with the Cowboys in recent weeks that he would be happy to leave over the off-season. North Queensland blocked his departure but they couldn’t prevent him signing a deal with the Knights for 2022.

    Recruitment guru Clint Zammit recently moved from North Queensland to Newcastle and was driving force behind the move to sign Clifford.

    “When the opportunity arose to sign Jake, I thought it was a perfect fit for both parties,” Zammit said.

    “We believe he will grow alongside the likes of Mitchell Pearce, both as a player and as a person.

    “He’s a good young talent from a good family and will be a great addition to both our playing group and the Knights for a long time.”

    Rather than becoming the long-term partner for Morgan, he will now fulfil that role for Pearce. The Knights are expected to open talks with Pearce over a contract extension next week and the expectation is that he will sign for a further two seasons, taking him through until the end of 2023.

    And the Wests Tigers have extended the contract of young forward Shawn Blore until the end of 2023. Blore made a big impression after making his first grade debut with the Tigers last season.

    Brent Read
    [​IMG]
    Senior Sports Writer
    Brent Read is one of rugby league's agenda setters but is also among the nation's most well-known golf writers. He also covers Olympic sports, writing with authority, wit and enthusiasm. Brent began his career ... Read more
     
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  7. Mickthedragon

    Mickthedragon Juniors

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    Sullivan could be our bench utility like the way most young talent is brought into top grade. We should get Widdop back if we can p*ss off Norman.
    Issue is, nobody wants him cause he's bog average these days.
    Seems we'll miss out on Gaz due to this,unfortunately.
     
  8. wazza33

    wazza33 Juniors

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    Hi All,
    Dont really write much on here, but North QLD sounds strange deal, as a guy i work with lives across the road from where Widdops house is, he came up to me last week saying the tennants have been advised to find another place to live as he is coming back to AUS, not saying he is coming back to the dragons, but if the tennants have been asked to move out i cant see a North QLD deal.., Thoughts?
     
  9. redVinme

    redVinme Juniors

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    Maybe they are renting and he is kicking them out to sell?

    Anywho shame we can't send Norman their way..
     
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  10. redv13

    redv13 Juniors

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    Widdop on 1 leg would be = to Norman
     
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  11. gregstar

    gregstar Referee

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    [​IMG]

    This dude is better than abNormal.
     
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  12. gUt

    gUt Coach

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    Wid



    DOP
     
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  13. jak

    jak Juniors

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    do you thing he will notice the difference?
     
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  14. Willow

    Willow Administrator

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    Is it in Blakehurst?
     
  15. The Badger

    The Badger Juniors

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    Is it not possible for Dragons to make offer to Widdop?He would make a perfect halves partner to Sullivan.If Sullivan is selected now he will have a lot of pressure on him to perform duties he is not ready for .Widdop can handle 70% of those duties allowing Sullivan to develop his own game in his own time.I shudder at the thought of a Hunt/Norman pairing .If Widdop or similar cant be signed my preference would be a Clune/Sullivan pairing which although vulnerable at least would have a go.It shows what a great player Lomax has turned out to be despite enduring the Hunt/Norman factor and a defeated pack of forwards..
     
  16. Inisai Toga

    Inisai Toga Juniors

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    Respectfully disagree with any thoughts of a Widdop return. Feel that chapter is finished and happy to go in a new direction..
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2020
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  17. Dragonslayer

    Dragonslayer First Grade

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    If NQ are looking for a 7 or 5/8 then my plan would be:
    Let NQ sign Widdop then immediarely trade him for Hunt.
    Gets Hunt off our books (who is signed with us for another 2 plus oprion), Wids for 2 years, Norman has 1 more, so then it opens up for Sullivan, Clune and Amone
     
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  18. BLM01

    BLM01 First Grade

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    Y
    Yeh strange but maybe they were not paying the rent snd need to bring other tenants in.

    And what I don’t understand is how they say Widdop has completed his commitments to Warrington.
    I thought he signed a few year deal to be near his grandparents and so they can watch him play.
    how many games did he actually play this year?
    All bizarre!
     
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  19. wazza33

    wazza33 Juniors

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    Nope Wollongong
     
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  20. muzby

    muzby Village Idiot Staff Member

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    Whoosh
     
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