Salford Red Devils have tonight confirmed a new one-year deal for star man Ken Sio, with the option to extend that by a further 12 months come the end of 2024.
Having joined the Red Devils from NRL outfit Newcastle Knights ahead of 2019, Sio went all the way to the Grand Final in his first year with the Greater Manchester outfit. Four years on, his four-pointer against Wigan Warriors on September 1 took him joint-third with Nathan McAvoy on the club’s all-time top try-scorers list with 78 in just 104 appearances.
With the winger off-contract, head coach Paul Rowley had already told Love Rugby League that his number two was going to be sticking around, with confirmation of that awaited by Red Devils fans and media alike for a long time.
It’s now come though, and Sio will have the opportunity to push on towards former teammate Niall Evalds (111) and ex-Ireland boss Stuart Littler (113) in that try-scoring table, something which Rowley is delighted about.
Salford Red Devils’ star man Ken Sio extends stay: ‘The ultimate professional’
The Blacktown-born speedster, who will turn 33 later this month, has been Salford’s top try scorer in each of the last three seasons, scoring a league-best 19 in 2021.
Sio was named in the Super League Dream Team for the first time after that haul, and was chosen again last term, though missed out to Leigh Leopards ace Josh Charnley and Catalans Dragons’ flier Tom Johnstone this time around. The latter of those has also made the shortlist for the Steve Prescott MBE Man of Steel.
Speaking to the Red Devils’ website, head coach Rowley said: “During my time at Salford, Ken Sio has been a consistent high performer on the field and the ultimate professional off it.
“As a man, he epitomises what we want our group to be about – hard-working, honest, brave and selfless. I speak for the whole coaching team when I say it is a pleasure and a privilege to be able to continue working alongside Ken going forward.
“I believe Ken has a positive influence on everybody he shares his time with, and all the playing group are delighted his journey continues with us!”
Trio of off-contract aces remain in Red Devils’ ranks
Former Hull KR winger Sio, a two-time Combined Nations All Stars representative, joins teammate Deon Cross in committing his future to the Greater Manchester outfit ahead of 2024.
Rowley has let James Greenwood and Rhys Williams go from his pack already, with Matty Costello also moving on and joining Championship outfit Barrow Raiders for next year.
Three off-contract players remain at the Salford Stadium now. The futures of Danny Addy, Amir Bourouh and Ben Hellewell are still unclear, with no announcement from the club of whether they will stay or go just yet.
One man who does look set to depart however is Brodie Croft. Reports have emerged in recent days that the reigning Man of Steel is all but signed on the dotted line at Headingley, with Leeds Rhinos believed to be paying a sum in the region of £300,000 for the superstar.
Papua New Guinea ace Nene Macdonald looks set to be heading the other way, with the big centre departing Leeds by mutual consent earlier this week.