This week’s Rumour Mill includes the latest on Jake Clifford, St Helens set to re-sign one of their star performers and Huddersfield winger Jermaine McGillvary opening up on his future.
Jake Clifford rejects monster deal
Hull FC half-back Jake Clifford is set to return to the NRL with former club North Queensland Cowboys for the 2024 campaign, reports Hull Live.
Clifford has rejected a deal reportedly worth more than double of what the Cowboys tabled with the Super League side keen to retain their star man.
The 25-year-old half-back made his debut with North Queensland Cowboys back in 2018, later joining Newcastle Knights for the 2021 campaign Down Under.
He signed with Hull on a two-year deal ahead of the 2023 campaign, but with a known NRL clause in his contract.
Jermaine McGillvary opens up on future
Jermaine McGillvary has opened up on his future, admitting to the Mirror that he has not been offered a new deal by Huddersfield Giants.
The former England international, who has made more than 300 appearances for the John Smith’s Stadium outfit, is off-contract at the end of the current season.
Injuries and squad competition have limited the 35-year-old to just eight appearances in 2023, and could be forced to move on or even retire at the end of the year.
Sione Mata’utia set to re-sign with Saints
St Helens head coach Paul Wellens is keen to get a new deal completed for overseas star Sione Mata’utia beyond the current season.
The back-rower’s current contract expires at the end of the year and has attracted reported interest back from the NRL, where he represented Newcastle Knights.
When asked about when Mata’utia’s new deal will be finalised, Wellens replied: “Hopefully as quickly as possible.
“I mentioned a few weeks ago that it was important we gave Sione and his family time to think about whether staying in the UK was something that they wanted to do and obviously he’s had those discussions now and it is starting to look quite favourable on our part that Sione wants to stay around a bit longer.”
Leeds eyeing up NRL hooker
Leeds Rhinos have set their sights on Canberra Raiders hooker and Samoa international Danny Levi, reports Leeds Live.
Levi, 26, was released early by Huddersfield Giants at the end of last year on compassionate grounds, allowing him to return home after just one season in Super League.
He signed a two-year deal with Ricky Stuart’s Canberra, with Leeds said to be keen on bringing the international hooker back to England.
Leeds boss Rohan Smith is yet to replace Kruise Leeming following his departure, with Jarrod O’Connor starting at nine and Corey Johnson predominantly featuring from the bench.
Tyson Frizell set to sign a new NRL deal
Some Hull KR fans were getting excited over chatter than Tyson Frizell was a target for the 2024 Super League campaign.
However, the dual-international back-rower, having represented Wales and Australia, is set to re-sign with current club Newcastle Knights.
The Sydney Morning Herald have reported that the 31-year-old is close to extending his deal, with fellow back-rower and team-mate Lachlan Fitzgibbon to join Warrington next year on a three-year deal.
Wigan youngster re-signs casting doubts over team-mate’s future
Wigan have confirmed that rising youngster Brad O’Neill has signed a new four-year deal with the club, securing his future until the end of 2027.
The hooker’s new deal casts even more doubts over the future of Cade Cust, who still remains without a deal for the 2024 campaign.
Cust, 24, has fallen down the pecking order at the DW Stadium, most recently utilised from the bench as hooker, with Bevan French partnering England international Harry Smith in the halves.
There is an option for next season on Cust’s current contract, but it would be a strange move with the Australian playmaker taking up an overseas quota spot in Matt Peet’s squad.