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Thread: Storm erupts over NRL club’s raid on Wallabies talent

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    Storm erupts over NRL club’s raid on Wallabies talent

    from news.com.au

    Australian rugby is bracing for another blow with an NRL `club set to make a play for a Wallabies rising star.

    This time it’s personal.

    The Roosters are reportedly preparing to launch a raid on Wallabies winger Mark Nawaqanitawase — just month after Joseph Suaalii jumped ship.

    The Sydney Morning Herald first reported Roosters boss Trent Robinson will meet with Nawaqanitawase next week in a potential revenge mission for Suaalii’s defection to Rugby Australia.

    Nawaqanitawase was one of the Wallabies’ best and brightest stars over the last two seasons and was a starter in their failed 2023 World Cup campaign.

    However, he heads into 2024 on the final year of his contract with Rugby Australia and has been non-commital when previously asked about his future.

    According to reports, the Roosters have had an eye on the 23-year-old for some time

    “In a perfect world I’d like to stay [in rugby], but there’s always a but, he told The SMH earlier this year.

    “There’s obviously other things out there that might interest me.”

    The Roosters are well stocked with outside backs in 2024 with former Knights star Dom Young joining the club, foxsports.com.au reports.

    The Roosters already have Daniel Tupou and Junior Pauga on their books for 2024, but the former is tipped to move on, while Suaalii will switch to rugby after next season.

    Nawaqanitawase, 23, has scored 27 tries in 45 games for the Waratahs and five tries in 11 Tests for Australia since making his debut in 2022.

    Nawaqanitawase’s potential defection would be a massive blow for rugby union who are trying to bounce back from a horror season under now departed Wallabies coach Eddie Jones.

    Nawaqanitawase would likely play wing while he learns the sport, but could be an option at fullback down the line when James Tedesco hangs up the boots.

    The Roar reports Rugby Australia has already played into the Roosters hands on multiple levels.

    The record $1.5 per-season deal signed by Suaalii has inflated the Australian rugby player market and it could mean the Roosters are able to provide a richer offer.

    The 15-man code’s decision to only extend Nawaqanitawase’s deal by 12 months earlier this year has further opened the door for the Roosters to strike.

    Suaalii signed a mammoth three-year deal worth almost $5 million in March, with the contract beginning after his Roosters deal expires in 2024.

    There was speculation in September Suaalii could be looking to get out of his rich deal as a result of the Wallabies being a basketcase this year.

    Under Eddie Jones’ trainwreck tenure the Wallabies failed to make it out of the group stage at the 2023 World Cup — the first time Australia has ever suffered that embarrassment.

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    Immortal jargan83's Avatar
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    Trying to pronounce his surname will be the reason that Blocker Roach dies on commentary.

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    Immortal Contributor shasta's Avatar
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    He could always do a Maloney and don't make the attempt. Surname Mark. First name Markey

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    IMHO this demonstrates how f….cked RA policy /decision making is …. Suaalii no Union in the last number of years . 3 year deal . Nawaqanitawase a proven talent with unbelievable potential 1 year . You just have to shake your head ……

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    Immortal Contributor shasta's Avatar
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    I think Mark N....se's agent will get him a contract upgrade. It won't be too difficult to match the Chooks. Uncle Nick is a highly experienced operator and anyone who thinks he'd pay overs for a winger to give McHamish a punch on the nose is insane. I think the Chooks real target might be Jorgo Jnr.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shasta View Post


    He could always do a Maloney and don't make the attempt. Surname Mark. First name Markey
    I thought Tim Horan stuck with Markey Mark, whereas Sean almost spells it out.

    Tho, I could be wrong...

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    The ARL Commission is set to discuss ratifying salary cap exemptions for signing players from rival codes at next month’s board meeting – which is not only good news for the Sydney Roosters and target Mark Nawaqanitawase, but also Rugby Australia’s hottest young talent and free agent, Max Jorgensen.

    This masthead exclusively revealed on Friday the Roosters were due to meet Nawaqanitawase next week for talks about joining them for the start of the 2025 season, when club legend Daniel Tupou will retire and Joseph Suaalii kicks off his $4.8 million three-year rugby deal.

    The rich package for Suaalii has left some of rugby’s stars, including Jorgensen, eyeing similar money. Sources with knowledge of Jorgensen’s contract situation told this masthead the teenage fullback could expect to command close to $1 million a year when his deal expires at the end of next season.

    A move to the NRL could be made easier if the ARLC fast-tracks plans to give NRL clubs financial incentives to target the best talent in rival codes.

    ARLC chairman Peter V’landys said in April he wanted to encourage clubs to pursue Wallabies and stars in other sports. That was before the Wallabies’ World Cup debacle, at a time when RA was compiling its own hit-list of NRL stars including South Sydney skipper Cameron Murray.

    V’landys and NRL chief executive Andrew Abdo had started to discuss giving clubs up to $1 million in cap relief for international talent in other codes. The plan was to encourage NRL clubs to source young talent from rugby systems in South Africa and Argentina, as well as NFL prospects in the US.

    “If a Wallaby or an All Black wanted to come over, we’d look at cap exemptions for sure,” V’landys told this masthead’s columnist Danny Weidler in April. “We have been looking at this for quite a while, and it’s a good time to revisit this. It’s something I’d like to see come in and come in now.”

    V’landys could not be contacted on Saturday, but sources with knowledge of the situation confirmed there was growing pressure on the ARLC to draft a policy as early as next month.

    As far back as 2015, former ARLC chairman Dave Smith planned to introduce a “war chest” to splash on players from rival codes. But the preferred model would be to give clubs cap relief, with a certain percentage of any contract to sit outside the cap.

    It is not clear whether any new salary cap exemptions would apply to the Roosters and their potential signing of Nawaqanitawase.

    The 23-year-old, who played the 13-man code as a junior for both the Concord Burwood Wolves and Leichhardt Wanderers, is expected to meet with Roosters coach Trent Robinson and chairman Nick Politis next week.

    Nawaqanitawase is off contract at the end of next year, as is Jorgensen, who was pursued by the Roosters and Canterbury Bulldogs before he signed a two-year deal to remain with the Waratahs and Wallabies.

    Jorgensen is expected to be paid around $300,000 next season, but that figure could nearly triple when it comes time to brokering a new contract. Jorgensen, the son of former Wallabies, Roosters and Panthers winger Peter, is happy to take his time weighing up what to do in 2025 and beyond.

    RA chairman Hamish McLennan offered no comment on Saturday, while chief executive Phil Waugh said on Friday of the Roosters’ interest in Nawaqanitawase: “A player like Mark is one of the key personnel to the future of the game in Australia. There is the British and Irish Lions tour in 2025 and the home World Cup in 2027 and that’s an exciting runway of events coming up. It’s an amazing opportunity for all players to be involved in such historical sporting events in Australia.”

    https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/spo...11-p5ej8g.html

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    Immortal jargan83's Avatar
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    I like the last paragraph where Phil Waugh says Nawaqanitawase is a key player for the future of Rugby in Australia but only gave him a 1 year deal.

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    Immortal Contributor shasta's Avatar
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    I said Nick Politis would not pay overs just to win a pissing comp. But PVL revels in it. He's confrontational in horse racing too.

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    Immortal Contributor shasta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by .X. View Post
    I thought Tim Horan stuck with Markey Mark, whereas Sean almost spells it out.

    Tho, I could be wrong...
    Probably. Jargs' point about pronunciation is valid anyway. And not just Blockhead.
    NRL callers were encouraged to learn Polynesian pronunciation. Some have done OK; some are cringers. Ken Mamalo became Mamalor, Isaak Tago - Tungor, Junior Paulo - Barlow & so on. But what would you expect from a bunch of dumb Mungos?

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    It’s a classic case of the ARU taking a penknife to a gunfight! Zilch in their war chest against an ever growing one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shasta View Post
    I said Nick Politis would not pay overs just to win a pissing comp. But PVL revels in it. He's confrontational in horse racing too.
    PVL lives to be shit stirrer.

    Wouldn't surprise me if PVL read the SMH article and then rang Uncle Nick to make it happen.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shasta View Post
    But what would you expect from a bunch of dumb Mungos?
    As I have attempted to say in the past. I wish I could take that one back.

    Mark Nawaqanitawase has enough raw talent and skill to be a game-breaker and game-changer in whatever code he chooses to participate in. He reminds me a lot of Ben Tune. I hope he stays in Rugby.

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    Immortal Contributor shasta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by .X. View Post
    As I have attempted to say in the past. I wish I could take that one back.
    Which? The dumb Mungo bit? Don't think that is from you X. Just a general shit stir from me. Thinking mainly of some of the posters losing their minds over at The Roar Chook Yard. I have a squizz their sometimes for a laugh. TWAS is as predictably stupid as ever.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shasta View Post
    I have a squizz their sometimes for a laugh.
    "There"


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