Catalans Dragons star Mitchell Pearce linked with NRL return

Josh McAllister
Mitchell Pearce, SWPix

Picture by Laurent Selles/Catalans Dragons/

Reports in Australia have linked Catalans star half-back Mitchell Pearce with a return to the NRL to struggling side Wests Tigers.

Pearce, 33, is currently in his second year in Super League with the Dragons after making the switch ahead of the 2022 campaign.

He left the Newcastle Knights to pursue the move, and has made 22 Super League appearances to date, scoring 11 tries.

Fox Sports has reported the move for the playmaker, who turns 34 next week, with a lucrative two-year deal worth $1.5 million.

Fox League reporter James Hooper broke the news on NRL 360, with Wests Tigers having reportedly also missed out on Cameron Munster, Mitchell Moses and George Williams ahead of 2023. 

Mitchell Pearce previously hinted at return

Playmaker Pearce previously spoke of his desire to return to Australia, where he represented New South Wales in State of Origin on 19 occasions.

He made his debut with Sydney Roosters in 2007, and won the 2013 Grand Final with the side.

A veteran of 309 NRL games, Pearce spoke with the Daily Telegraph about his potential return.

He stated ahead of the 2023 Super League season kicking-off: “I’ve always said I’d like another year in the NRL before retiring, so we’ll see what’s available.”

Wests Tigers are struggling early on in the 2023 campaign under Tim Sheens and remain the only side without a win with a record of 0-4.

Half-back Luke Brooks has been under constant pressure following the disappointing start, with Lebanon international Adam Doueihi also featuring in the halves. 

Off-season recruit Brandon Wakeham has also been utilised at half-back, but the trio have only managed to help the side to 56 points, the second lowest in the competition.

Wests Tiger released Jackson Hastings at the end of 2022 in a swap deal with Newcastle Knights that saw forward David Klemmer go the other way.

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